Cargill Salt Mine, DEC accused of allowing pollutants to flow into Cayuga Lake

An independent environmental monitor alleges pollutants were allowed to flow unchecked into Cayuga Lake from the Cargill Salt Mine in Lansing.

Walter Hang, of Toxics Targeting, is accusing the salt mine operators and the New York Department of Environmental Conservation of allowing the flow of sodium ferrocyanide  into Cayuga Lake. He indicated the problem may have been ongoing for several months, and maybe years, without detection.

Sodium ferrocyanide, Hang said, is an anti-caking agent used in road de-icing salt, but a substance with low toxicity. Once coming into contact with water, however, the cyanide disassociates, becoming more toxic, according to Hang’s research.

“The spill is historical,” Hang said, adding that he only uncovered the spill after filing a records request under the New York’s Freedom of Information Law. “We don’t know how long the release has been going on.”

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