Lockheed-Martin, America's largest military contractor, will make a huge real estate profit from its purchase and resale for development of the 93-acre former Sperry property. In acquiring the severely contaminated site, it accepted responsibility for the toxic and hazardous chemicals leaching down from old waste pits to subsurface groundwaters which flow both northward and southward toward public supply wells in Great Neck, Port Washington, Manhasset and New Hyde Park.
Carcinogenic contaminants have already spread beyond the Lockheed-Martin site and are being detected in monitoring wells and supply wells located in the Manhasset-Lakeville Water District north of the site and in Western Nassau Water Authority wells south of the site. (All water provided to the public by both suppliers is considered safer to drink than bottled water because harmful contaminant amounts must always be removed by suppliers before the water is piped to consumer taps -- which is not always the case with bottled water.)
The apparent paradox of groundwater flowing in two directions is understood when one becomes aware that the Lockheed-Martin site sits atop the groundwater divide that separates precipitation seepage that enters the aquifers north of the divide to move toward the North Shore and Long Island Sound - from the seepage that enters south of the divide to move toward the South Shore and the Atlantic Ocean.
Unfortunately, the New York State DEC (Department of Environmental Conservation) is permitting Lockheed-Martin to sell off for development the relatively low-contaminated 84-acre portion of the old Sperry site for a profit of many millions of dollars before all contaminants originating from the heavily contaminated nine acres retained by Lockheed-Martin are fully cleaned up. I and others have always opposed this because it allows Lockheed-Martin to make an unconscionable profit before it completes its obligation to clean up all contaminants that are polluting the air as well as the groundwater; which endangers public health.
However, the most egregious mistake and the worst health hazard that the DEC is foisting upon the public and the suppliers who are compelled by law to clean up the water (at local expense) before piping it to residential and business taps, is the failure to force Lockheed-Martin to remove the witches' brew of poisons that were dumped in three drainage ponds located within the nine-acre portion being retained by Lockheed-Martin. The toxic wastes include arsenic, chromium, cobalt, cyanide, lead, manganese, mercury, and synthetic organic chemicals such as dibenzofurans, tetrachloroethylene and trichloroethylene.
Despite the ease of surface bulldozer access to the polluted pond-bottom muds, the only "remediation" required of Lockheed-Martin by DEC is a fence and warning signs around each of the three heavily contaminated drainage ponds - to keep the public out. What nonsense! While groundwater cleanup is going on, whether it takes years or decades, Lockheed-Martin personnel who will be there to operate the equipment will also guard the fences and signs; but who will repair the breaks and replace the signs when Lockheed-Martin leaves after the cleanup is completed?
There is no excuse for such unmitigated bureaucratic claptrap. Approximately 3,000 fenced flood-control sumps with warning signs exist on Long Island. Almost every one has experienced break-ins and sign destruction in the past. What makes the DEC think the Lockheed-Martin poison-pond fences and signs will fare any better?
Now is the time for all good citizens to complain - not when some children drown or are poisoned after breaking in to go swimming on some future sultry July day when the fences are unguarded. Lockheed-Martin must be forced to remove the toxic hazardous wastes in their three drainage ponds.
While the new park Lake Success LLC high-tech facility will be a welcome addition and use of the property, Lockheed-Martin should be compelled to post a bond equivalent to its profit that would guarantee the total clean-up of all contaminants associated with the site.