opposition to artificial turf with crumb rubber infill at leo santaballa field n.
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Opposition to Artificial Turf with Crumb Rubber Infill at Leo Santaballa Field

Opposition to Artificial Turf with Crumb Rubber Infill at Leo Santaballa Field

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Opposition to Artificial Turf with Crumb Rubber Infill at Leo Santaballa Field

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  1. Opposition to Artificial Turf with Crumb Rubber Infill at Leo Santaballa Field Why Crumb Rubber Infill is the Wrong Material, and Leo Santaballa Field is the Wrong Location

  2. The Context of this Conversation • A true community clean up effort is underway already: Marmota Farms HOA, Innsbruck Ave. Road Committee, and other watershed neighbors are already actively engaged in clean up of watershed and stream restoration efforts. • Fairfax County and Watershed Advisory Group have been working together with us. • Residents have invested time and money in clean up options, scientific studies, and planning efforts. • There is a lot of momentum, motivated by health concerns and the desire to help the environment. • We are sports families, and appreciate the need for playing fields in Fairfax County.

  3. We LOVE Great Falls We are committed to: • preserving its unique ecosystem and semi-rural lifestyle • Protecting ground water drinking supply • Preserving this wild, still beautiful place for generations to come • Willing to make the hard decisions to protect it.

  4. Our Concerns: • Leo Santaballa Field is at the top of our watershed and therefore drainage is in a position to do the most damage to our streams, Lake Marmota, and our well water. • The field and Great Falls are located on fractured bedrock. We use well water as primary drinking water. • Runoff will be contaminated with heavy metals and toxic chemicals from crumb rubber and industrial strength antibacterial cleaners. ( • The heavy metals and toxic chemicals in crumb rubber have been proven deadly to fish and aquatic life, (ref. Dept. of Environmental Protection, State of Connecticut, Artificial Turf Fields, July 2010, p.10-17.) and cannot be cleaned up once they land in our Lake and watershed. • 20,000,000 million gallons of contaminated field drainage will reach our watershed and is likely to reach our drinking water wells.

  5. Crumb Rubber is made from used tires that contain heavy metals and toxic chemicals. The EPA has identified a number of compounds that may be found in the recycled tires used for the crumb rubber layer in artificial turf fields: *acetone  *aniline  *arsenic  *barium  *benzene  *benzothiazole  *cadmium  *chloroethane  *chromium  *cobalt  *copper *halogenated flame retardants  *isoprene  *latex  *lead *manganese  *mercury  *methyl ethyl ketone  *methyl isobutyl ketone  *naphthalene *nickel  *nylon  *phenol *pigments  *polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons  *polyester  *rayon *styrene‑butadiene  *toluene  *trichloroethylene

  6. Old tires = crumb rubber field infill = move pollution load from landfills to playing fields and our groundwater • Tires are considered so toxic they have their own landfills and are regulated as toxic waste in most states. • 30,000 old tires are used on average for an athletic field. • 120 tons of pulverized crumb rubber. The small pieces mean more surface area from which heavy metals and toxins can be released. • Smaller pieces also means faster degradation over time, leading to microscopic dust particles that players breathe in during games. • These particles are too tiny to catch and prevent from entering into our waterways and being eaten/breathed in by aquatic organisms. • The secondary or recycled tire products are still just as toxic, but are not subject to same scrutiny, regulations or controls. • Net effect: shifting the pollution burden from one state/location to another location where kids play is bad policy and bad business. • Net effect: shifting pollution burden from one state/location to another where it kills a local ecosystem or pollutes groundwater is wrong. Our Question: Should the dumping ground for tires that are not regulated for toxicity and heavy metals be allowed right above our stream, Lake and wells?

  7. Artificial turf field drainage = direct contamination of streams, lake, soils, groundwater and wells • Leo Santaballa Field sits at the top of our watershed • The proposed artificial turf field will annually drain approximately 2 MILLION GALLONS of effluent containing heavy metals and toxic chemicals annually. It will flow directly into homes and private properties in Mine Run Stream, Lake Marmota, across our watershed and, eventually, into the Potomac River and Chesapeake Bay. • That’s 20 MILLION GALLONS during the average 10 year life of an artificial turf field. • While subfield gravel substrate and drainage system will hopefully slow the release of effluent… • No removal of heavy metals or toxic chemicals from the water is required, despite the serious risk to our well water and aquatic life in our streams and lakes. • Thus, these 20 million gallons are expected to land in and accumulate in private property across our watershed.

  8. Please answer these questions: 1. How will Fairfax County and the GF Lacrosse Association stop 20 million gallons from landing in and contaminating our private property? 2. How will Fairfax County and the GF Lacrosse Association stop these harmful chemicals from getting into our well water? 3. What methods will be used to test and monitor the effluent, and how often will they be performed? How will reporting be accomplished? Who pays for damages? 4. Can you guarantee that our streams and Lake Marmota, which now have a balanced ecosystem full of fish, will not be changed? • Will our wells remain safe? For how long? • Will the fish live? • Will our soil be affected by heavy metals? For how long?

  9. What else drains from the field? • Industrial strength antibacterial solutions and chemicals used to treat MRSA and other bacterial cultures will go directly into streams, Lake and groundwater. • Due to their strength and high toxicity, the chemical runoff will also harm fish and aquatic life. • Some concerns are now being raised about the possibility of rinsing MRSA and other cultures into open waterways may actually encourage their evolution. More study is needed. QUESTION: What is the field maintenance plan, and does it take into account its effect on downstream watershed?

  10. What else is in tires? Tiny particles = big concerns • Carbon black, a known carcinogen, is extremely small, and manufactured nanostructures of it have been added as a component in tires to increase strength. • When tires are pulverized into crumb rubber, the tiny carbon black structures are released as very tiny, fine dust, very hard to detect. • The carbon black particles have been found in body cells, brain cells and in brain cell mitochondria. (3 studies in Europe.) • Exposure within the cell to these nanoparticles may be associated with a new generation of neurological disease and other diseases. (Kathy Michels, Ph.D, NIH). • Effects should not be underestimated. • Difficulty in studying effects should not be underestimated. • Nano particle exposure risk is expected to be much higher in children than adults. • A potentially huge issue in the future. Our Questions: 1. Who at Farifax County will be monitoring this carcinogen’s presence on turf fields? In players or downstream neighbors? 2. Has there been enough research done on this subject to say with 100% certainty that there is no risk to our children from this known carcinogen when they play on artificial turf? 3. Should more studies be done on this before we add another artificial turf field to our community?

  11. Heat: How Hot is Too Hot? • Chris Hummer, Editor of the Potomac Soccer Wire, wrote an article in August 2010 titled, “How long until someone dies of heatstroke on a synthetic turf field?” • In this article, Hummer cites studies that record synthetic turf field temperatures of 200 degrees on a day when the air temperature was 98 degrees. • Studies show irrigating the field only reduces the temperature for 10 minutes • There is a LOT of documentation that these fields get notoriously hot. Our Questions: 1. Should children be forced to play on fields that are so hot they are dangerous, even though they’re protected from playing when there is lightning or heavy moisture has increased the risk of injury? • What are the options for lowering temps? Irrigating the field (during half time?) or using green rubber infill? Will you study this? • How will the children playing be protected from high heat? • If heat becomes an issue, how will the lack of usage on hot days affect the overall “increased usability” of artificial turf, particularly considering normal summer temperatures in Great Falls?

  12. Study Results: Crumb rubber placed directly in water kills fish Coastal Marine Resource Center Policy Project, 2008, "The Effects of Crumb Rubber on Water Quality”, available at Leaching of Toxins and Water Quality Studies: “Zinc leachate from crumb rubber infill may pose a threat to both ground and surface water. Furthermore, the study found the zinc leachate to pose a potential threat to the drainage from the playing fields. While Vershoor (Ibid) concluded that the leachate would not affect human health, it could damage marine biota and the surrounding environment if concentrations are significant…” “One study from the Canadian government found that all rainbow trout exposed to water containing scrap tires for 60 days died within 24 hours (Kellough RM. Effects of scrap automobile tires in water. Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Toronto, Waste Management Branch, 1991) within 24 hours, all of the species of one invertebrate [exposed to 10 mL of water with a single piece of scrap tire] died while the other invertebrate had varying mortality levels depending on the brand of tire placed in the water…” Day et al., (Day, K.E., K.E. Holtze, J.L. Metcalfe-Smith, C.T. Bishop, and B.J Dutka. Toxicity of leachate from automobile tires to aquatic biota. Chemosphere. 27.5 (1993): 665 – 675.), in a related study,”examined the effects of three separate whole tires – one from a floating breakwater, one road-worn tire, and one new tire – immersed in water. The study found the water from both the new and used tire to contain toxic leachate and proved fatal to rainbow trout. The water from the used tire was more toxic however and remained toxic for 24 days longer than the water from the new tire.”

  13. Study Results: Drainage of water over crumb rubber fields kill ecosystems State of Connecticut, Department of Environmental Projection Stud, titled: Final Report, Artificial Turf Study, Leachate and Stormwater Characteristics. Released July 2010. link: http//www.ct/gov.dep.lib.artificialturf/dep_artificial_turf_report.pdf EXCERPTS: Metals “Metal concentrations in excess of the acute aquatic life criteria for more than one hour could cause mortality to the more sensitive organisms in the receiving surface waters.” Aquatic Toxicity “Toxicity tests conducted on the samples of stormwater collected indicate that 3 out of 8 sampling events were acutely toxic. Acute toxicity is observed when there is less than 90% survival of the test organisms in the undiluted effluent. The frequency of occurrence for acute toxicity was at least one sample per field.” CAES Laboratory Headspace and Leaching Results [T]he predominant contaminant leaching from artificial turf fields is zinc, followed by barium, manganese and lead.[Z]inc is present in the leachate at concentrations about 500 times greater than the toxicity criteria. The leachate study indicates that there is a high potential for the artificial turf to leach acutely toxic levels of metals especially copper and zinc. Certain samples of crumb rubber also leached acutely toxic levels of cadmium, barium, manganese and lead.”

  14. Question:Have you studied the threat of contaminated effluent to groundwater? Remember: Great Falls Field sits atop fractured bedrock, creating unpredictable underground drainage. Our Question: How can Fairfax County and the Lacrosse Association guarantee that if there is any drainage into the groundwater, it will not get into our wells? Consider the dry cleaning spill a quarter mile from Innsbruck Ave. 10 years ago that is still contaminating well water.

  15. Some BIG Questions: Who Will Clean It Up? • What will Fairfax County and the Lacrosse Association do if crumb rubber gets into our streams and lake? Who will clean it up? What timeframe? • How will Fairfax County and the Lacrosse Association prevent 20 million gallons of effluent contaminated by heavy metals and toxic chemicals from reaching our wells? • What water treatment systems will be in place to prevent contamination? • Who decides what is an unhealthy level? • Who has the responsibility to test and monitor? • If well intrusion happens, who will clean it up? • If well, surface, ground water or soil contamination happens, will property value loss be compensated? What are the terms?

  16. BIG QUESTIONS, cont’d • Who is responsible for damages? • What process will be in place to hear and address grievances? • What liability does FFC accept for damages? • Who is responsible for testing, reporting, and a monitoring health and contamination? • When heavy metal contamination from effluent accumulates at the Lake, who will clean it up? • Who protects the neighbors?

  17. Before installation, or approval, will FFC study and report on: • Ground water impact for well community • Impact for watershed, lake ecology and property value • Whole ecosystem impact study • Soils impact • Alternatives to Artificial Turf Field (crumb rubber infill), including other infills, and grass options • Bathometric impacts • Lake and stream testing plan, maintenance plan and renovation plan, and damages accountability • More?

  18. CONCLUSION • It is scientifically proven that heavy metals in crumb rubber and toxic chemicals in cleaners are fatal to our aquatic life. • The proposed field raises profound questions about our health, the integrity of our drinking water and the survival of our local ecosystem. • Until we are sure the impacts are acceptable and COMPLETELY SAFE, we should employ the precautionary principle, and stop the construction of an artificial turf field at Leo Santaballa until we know its safe to family health and ecosystem health.