Monday, May 18, 2009

After 25 Years of Stalling, GE Starts Cleaning The Hudson

It was this story that let me know ecomagination was just a catchy marketing ploy.
Back in October '07 I wrote:
Hi GE, I posted something nice about Fairfield last week, now clean up the Hudson and we can be friends again....
From April '08:
Jeff Immelt took over as CEO of G.E. on September 10, 2001.
The Stock closed that day at $38.95.
In pre-market trading today, the stock was changing hands at $32.72, down $4.03 (10.97%).
A negative 16% return over the last six years and seven months.
GE is the largest member of the U.S. Climate Action Partnership.
And a huge factor in just about every sector of the energy biz.
So we keep and eye on the giant (see Notable Calls, below).

One of the most disgusting GE stories in our bookmarks is this:
GE gets grant to install GE solar panels on GE headquarters.

The Connecticut Clean Energy Fund assesses a fee on every utility bill in the state. Welfare moms in Bridgeport and Hartford paid GE to install GE solar panels on GE headquarters. Bizarre, huh?
We've had a couple dozen posts* that reference GE, use the "search blog" box if you want more.
Enron's Ken Lay used to be on the Pew Center's "Business Environmental Leadership Council".
I don't know if the Center sent flowers for his funeral.
The Pew Center is a founding member of the U.S. Climate Action Partnership.

Joe Lieberman is the Independent-Democrat Senator from Connecticut.
General Electric Corporation, one of the largest market-capitalization stocks on the board, is headquartered in Fairfield CT.

General Electric is a founding member of US-CAP.

To quote Kurt Vonnegut "And so it goes".
Mr. Vonnegut worked for General Electric.
He was a P.R. flak.
Here are some of his thoughts on GE.
G.E.'s stock bottomed at $5.73 earlier this year. It is currently trading at $13.41. A long 7 1/2 years for the shareholders.
Here's the Hudson story, from the New York Times:
MOREAU, N.Y. — Twenty-five years after the federal government declared a long stretch of the Hudson River to be a contaminated Superfund site, the cleanup of its chief remaining source of pollution began here Friday with a single scoop of mud extracted by a computer-guided dredge.

Twelve dredges are to work round the clock, six days a week, into October, removing sediment laced with the chemicals known as PCBs. Mile-long freight trains running every several days will carry the dried mud to a hazardous-waste landfill in Texas.

An estimated 1.3 million pounds of PCBs, or polychlorinated biphenyls, flowed into the upper Hudson from two General Electric factories for three decades before they were banned, in 1977, as a health threat to people and wildlife. In high doses, they have been shown to cause cancer in animals and are listed by federal agencies as a probable human carcinogen....

...G.E. is supervising and paying for the cleanup, which federal officials have estimated could cost more than $750 million. Industry experts say the ultimate cost could be many times than that, however. (G.E. declines to give an estimate.)

While most of the chemicals were dumped when such practices were legal, the Superfund law requires the responsible polluting party, when one can be pinpointed, to foot the cleanup bill.

Yet G.E has reserved the right, after a review of the operation in 2010, to reject the project’s much larger second phase. Federal environmental officials have said that if it did that, they would most likely order the cleanup to proceed and levy enormous penalties against the company....MORE