Search Results for 'Michael Collins'

THAT HEALTHY GLOW

Radiation? A health tonic! The history of L.A.’s radium rage
By Michael Collins
Los Angeles CityBeat/ValleyBeat — August 5, 2006
Once upon a time in the City of Angels, radioactive products made with lethal yet luminous radium became a health rage. Wondrous radium, which cost $1 million an ounce in the 1920s, was commonly prescribed by physicians to […]

THE DIRT ON OUR DIRT

Roll up, roll up for the military toxicity tour
By Michael Collins
Los Angeles CityBeat/ValleyBeat – August 3, 2006
Southern California is seasonally inundated with tour buses plying the streets of Hollywood and the homes of entertainment stars. But a new tour, begun this summer, takes the curious to places far hotter and more significant: the Military Tour […]

SMOKE ON THE WATER

SMOKE ON THE WATER

Proposition 84 promises much-needed water cleanup in the San Fernando Valley, but is still struggling to get traction
By Michael Collins
Los Angeles CityBeat/ValleyBeat — November 2, 2006
When they go to the polls November 7, Angelenos will be paying special attention to Proposition 84, the biggest water bond ever floated in the state. Besides shoring up the […]

FISHBACK MOUNTAIN

One man calls his project on the L.A./Ventura border the pursuit of a dream home, but others just see an illegal solid waste dump.
By Michael Collins
Los Angeles CityBeat/ValleyBeat – November 23, 2006
Chatsworth resident Todd Doherty began noticing a heavy flow of dump truck traffic heading up and down Woolsey Canyon in November 2004. The 10, […]

ROCKETDYNE’S RED GLARE

ROCKETDYNE’S RED GLARE

By Michael Collins
LA Weekly – December 9, 1998

Pulling up to Simi Valley City Hall the morning of October 21, EPA staffer Vicky Semones was counting on a quiet, efficient work meeting. Her job was to coordinate the scientists, public officials and community representatives monitoring the cleanup from decades of nuclear and chemical experimentation at the […]

TOTAL RECALL

TOTAL RECALL

By Michael Collins
LA Weekly – December 9,1998

“Start talking to the former employees — those who are left alive — that have not contracted cancer,” former Rocketdyne technician Dan Parks implored at the June 24 meeting of the Santa Susana Field Interagency Work Group. A lifelong resident of Simi Valley, Parks worked for Rocketdyne’s Radiation […]

MELTDOWN MONEY

MELTDOWN MONEY

By Michael Collins
LA Weekly – December 23, 1998

Imagine giving someone millions of dollars for doing a bad job. That’s what Secretary of Energy Bill Richardson did on December 15 when he awarded aerospace giant Boeing $148.5 million to complete cleanup efforts at its Rocketdyne Santa Susana Field Laboratory by 2006.
Among the more creative reasons Department […]

SUITED UP

SUITED UP

By Michael Collins
LA Weekly – January 20, 1999

Accused industrial polluter Rocketdyne has ducked several legal bullets, but its problems aren’t over yet.
The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco last month green-lighted a federal class-action lawsuit against the corporation’s parent company, Boeing.
The suit charges Rocketdyne with leaks and releases of radioactive […]

UCLA STUDY BURNS ROCKETDYNE

UCLA STUDY BURNS ROCKETDYNE

Cancer rates elevated among space-lab workers
By Michael Collins
LA Weekly – April 21, 1999

The other gooey shoe dropped last week in Simi Valley. UCLA’s School of Public Health released its long-term study of Rocketdyne employees exposed to a soup of toxic chemicals while working on the company’s giant rocket test-stands.
The results were grim: Increased rates of […]

ROCKET MAN

ROCKET MAN

William Webber’s memory of fire
By Michael Collins
LA Weekly – April 21, 1999

In conducting two detailed long-term health surveys of Rocketdyne employees, UCLA scientists have necessarily focused on the results of working for a firm that helped pioneer the space race.
William Webber offers a glimpse of how it all happened.
A rocket scientist who spent a total […]

STATE STAINED IN ROCKETDYNE SCANDAL

STATE STAINED IN ROCKETDYNE SCANDAL

Watchdog agency under fire for colluding with space firm
By Michael Collins
LA Weekly – May 5, 1999
The controversy over potential toxic contamination of workers and the community surrounding Rocketdyne’s Santa Susana Field Laboratory in Simi Valley is now threatening to engulf a state agency charged with monitoring inquiries into the aerospace giant.
Assembly Members Sheila Kuehl (D– […]

BLAST FROM THE PAST

BLAST FROM THE PAST

Criminal charges filed in fatal explosion
By Michael Collins
(LA Weekly – May 5, 1999)

On July 26, 1994, two scientists at Rocketdyne’s Santa Susana Field Laboratory, Otto Heiney and Larry Pugh, “placed [rocket propellant] in a container over a bed of sawdust and then ignited [it] with an electric match to see how [it] would burn,” according […]

ROCKET SLIME

ROCKET SLIME

By Michael Collins
LA Weekly – July 8, 1999

It’s been more than a decade since Rocketdyne shut down its nuclear-test site to focus on cleaning up the toxic goo contaminating its sprawling compound between Chatsworth and Simi Valley. The cleanup has been a long, slow process, with the aerospace giant fighting for ludicrously lenient standards every […]

TOXIC SPRING

TOXIC SPRING

By Michael Collins
LA Weekly – August 5, 1999

Community groups have long protested defense contractor Rocketdyne’s failure to clean up toxic wastes at its Santa Susana Field Laboratory in the hills between the Simi and San Fernando valleys. But this week, it was a cleanup plan that raised hackles.
The state Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) […]

ROCKETDYING

ROCKETDYING

By Michael Collins
LA Weekly – October 14, 1999

Military-industrial giant Rocketdyne has been reeling the last few weeks from a barrage of negative publicity about pollution problems at its Santa Susana Field Laboratory.
Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer has demanded a more stringent cleanup at the San Fernando/ Simi valleys–straddling site.
And Channel 2 News produced a […]

ROCKETDYNE RUNAROUND

ROCKETDYNE RUNAROUND

By Michael Collins
LA Weekly – January 11, 2000

This week, the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency issued an unprecedented invitation to community activists to tour three former Rocketdyne nuclear buildings to observe an environmental survey for radioactive contamination.
The media was invited as well to the site in the hills between the Simi and San Fernando […]

THINGS ARE PERC-ING UP

THINGS ARE PERC-ING UP

By Michael Collins
Ventura County Reporter – February 12, 2003

Even veterans of the decades-old battle over Rocketdyne’s heavily polluted Santa Susana Field Laboratory were a bit awed Monday night.
Gone was the contentiousness that marked Rocketdyne community meetings over the last 10 years.
The standing-room-only crowd and parade of officials at Thousand Oaks’ Civic Arts Plaza […]

FIRE ON THE MOUNTAIN

FIRE ON THE MOUNTAIN

Simi Valley’s Rocketdyne facility was blasted by 50 years of rocket engines and nuclear reactor meltdowns, leaving a toxic disaster atop what residents call “The Hill.” Runoff may be poisoning Southland residents. And now the government just broke a promise to clean it up.
By Michael Collins and Sharon McKenna
Los Angeles ValleyBeat – June 12, 2003

Simi […]

THE SINS OF ROCKETDYNE

By Michael Collins and Sharon McKenna
Los Angeles CityBeat/ValleyBeat – July 3, 2003
Last week’s news that the toxic chemical perchlorate was found gurgling from a groundwater well, nearly a mile outside the northern border of the Rocketdyne facility, shocked many Simi and San Fernando valley residents. But former Rocketdyne worker Lynwood Sibley was hardly surprised. Sibley […]

PERCHLORATE PATROL

PERCHLORATE PATROL

Cal-EPA comes down on Simi Valley’s Rocketdyne facility
By Michael Collins
Los Angeles ValleyBeat – October 23, 2003

The toxic leaks continue at the Rocketdyne lab in Simi Valley. After high levels of the toxic rocket fuel oxidizer perchlorate were found this summer near the facility, California’s Environmental Protection Agency (Cal-EPA) ordered the company to put together a […]

TWO MILE ISLAND - CAUTION RADIATION

TWO MILE ISLAND – CAUTION RADIATION

Supervisors vote to require groundwater testing
By Michael Collins
Ventura County Reporter – August 5, 2004

On August 3, Ventura County Supervisor Linda Parks’ precedent setting initiative to require testing for pollutants near the heavily contaminated Rocketdyne facility in Simi Valley won approval from the county’s Board of Supervisors on a 3-2 vote. Cheers erupted from a crowd […]

BETWEEN ROCKETDYNE AND A HARD PLACE

BETWEEN ROCKETDYNE AND A HARD PLACE

Ventura County imposes testing for development within two miles of Rocketdyne
By Michael Collins
Los Angeles CityBeat/ValleyBeat – August 12, 2004

The battle over managing toxics at Rocketdyne’s Santa Susana Field Laboratory took a historic turn last week with a victory for environmentalists seeking to protect future neighbors of the facility. On August 3, the Ventura County Board […]

IN HOT WATER

IN HOT WATER

More good news about contamination from your friends at Rocketdyne
By Michael Collins
Ventura County Reporter – September 23, 2004

With new revelations coming almost monthly, the scope of the toxic mess at the Rocketdyne aerospace complex in the hills between the San Fernando and Simi valleys continues to grow. Radiological and chemical pollution at the vast Santa […]

RADIATING OUTWARD

RADIATING OUTWARD

More good news about contamination from your friends at Rocketdyne
By Michael Collins
Los Angeles CityBeat/ValleyBeat – September 27, 2004

With new revelations coming almost monthly, the scope of the toxic mess at the Rocketdyne aerospace complex in the hills between the San Fernando and Simi valleys continues to grow. Radiological and chemical pollution at the vast Santa […]

PIPE DREAMS

Plans to store contaminated water under Ahmanson Ranch raise environmental concerns
By Michael Collins
Los Angeles CityBeat/ValleyBeat – February 24, 2005
The deluge of rain soaking Southern California hasn’t washed away the problems of a scant water supply throughout the region. Now a plan to bank reclaimed water in eastern Ventura County has raised concerns that it could […]