The federal Environmental Protection Agency is asking for volunteers to participate in a community advisory group on the superfund sites in the northern Twin Cities suburb of Fridley.
The EPA and the state are cleaning up seven industrial sites near the Mississippi River. Neighbors are concerned because the population in that area has a higher cancer rate than the rest of the state. State officials say there is no evidence that contamination is the cause. The Health Department has said it is possible smoking or other behaviors could be behind the higher incidence.
The advisory group serves as an information conduit between residents and government agencies. It's inception came from a health fair last summer.
"It became very clear we hadn't done a very good job of keeping people up to date on work that had been done at the Superfund sites," Minnesota Pollution Control Agency spokesman Sam Brungardt said.
"It seemed like there was a lot of frustration in our community and that people wanted information, and this is a vehicle in which to help the community have a voice," said the group's Representative-elect Connie Bernardy.
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