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National Educational radio presents the following program in cooperation with a group w o the Westinghouse Broadcasting Company. Let me first on this part of the world it was wild and people as any. But over the years we took steps. Or did we fix it. What a pollution we shrugged off the price of progress. The sludge the slime the oily slick the fish that taste like fleshly gasoline. Look at anybody do. Governor Rockefeller answer that question. The governor's massive pure water program is wiping out water pollution in New York State. Over 70 cities and industries have already agreed to correct that by lation and by the end of the summer Governor Rockefeller will have called in every major polluter for a hearing. But in six years people waters will be a
fact in New York State. Yes we have done it created a situation so threatening and intolerable that the voters of New York want it ended. No matter what the cost. Water and air pollution abatement have become a leading political issues important enough for New York's Governor Rockefeller to use as major planks in his re-election campaign this fall. The Westinghouse Broadcasting Company presents the pollution explosion a 10 part study of the rising tide of air and water. Your commentator John. Pollution of the air water and land has become a growing burden. People now are bothered not just by bacterial contamination of polluted water or by chemical contamination of
water in our streams. This is Dwight Metzler deputy commissioner of the pure water program New York State Health Department. They're concerned because there's not enough clean water in which to play this when we go water skiing go boating to catch fish hunt ducks. People are really concerned these days about living the good life. And this involves just more than freedom from disease in this and the next program we will take a close look at some of the areas where the encroachment of water pollution is being halted and some not so in like places where the problem is just beginning to be recognized. We came to conclusion that we had to move two thirds of our ever polluted and therefore we have to pass through the legislature they voted unanimously in both houses to support the program. Bond issue went to the people youre hearing the voice of New York's Governor Nelson
Rockefeller talking about his state's pure waters Act passed by the legislature in 1065 and affirmed 41 by a voter referendum the act has been hailed Countrywide by water pollution control officials as a major breakthrough. Thomas Glynn Jr. director and chief engineer of the New York New Jersey interstate sanitation commission explains the most salient features. One of the major portions of the program of course is the passage of the billion dollar referendum which will rob. Matching funds to the communities for Berlin these treatment plans the state will put up 30 percent and from the start they will also put up an additional 30 percent for the families share with the hope of letter of obtaining this money back from the federal government.
So this means that the community is well early would be required to put up 5 percent of the construction costs either parts of the governor's program with the legislation was passed recently. Asked us in Bastrop tax exemption and I asked her and asked for a tax reduction. The bill also provides 30 percent state aid to cities which operate their disposable plates efficiently. These provisions are all important. But the enforcement section contains the teeth of the program. Robert Hennigan directed the New York State Health Department administers much of these proceedings and he is quite pleased with the results so far. Under the enforcement proceedings the new amendments to the law streamlined enforcement hearings and also provided that every phase of
a particular situation must be determined in a single hearing under our new procedure and we can move much better than we have in the past. I think that this is shown by the enforcement action taken prior to the pure waters program some twenty six hearings were held in the 16 years of age 70. And when the new bill was passed out of the twenty six hearings 19 of the violators were in default or the hearings were not concluded. Under the new program we've held some one hundred twenty four hearings and violators about evenly divided between municipalities and industries and some 86 orders have been issued by the commissioner of health ordering a polluters to prepare planes and to construct the needed facilities out of the hundred twenty four citations only seven. The people who are alleged to be violators chose to protest the proceedings and enter into a
full blown hearing on the issues. Generally speaking of both the municipalities and the industries recognizing the new climate of public opinion which were operating have gone all out to reach some type of satisfactory agreement with the department opponents of strong state pollution control laws have always held axiomatic that beleaguered industries would simply pack up and move to greener and free of past years. But New York State's experience is putting the lie to this theory. Only one small paper mill chose to leave the state rather than install pollution control equipment. And this was an old so called marginal business barely eking out a living. Other states are beginning to follow New York's lead. One of these is Massachusetts. The rivers of Massachusetts are among the prime offenders in the nation. In the area of pollution. This results from a land society and from the congestion of the
urban areas. Together with an old style riverbank plants of which we have so many speaking is Massachusetts state senator Joseph ward. I believe that the federal government has pointed out the Nashua and the Connecticut rivers both passionately in Massachusetts as well as the Merrimack River which is in New Hampshire and Massachusetts as a moment among the prime offenders in the nation. After many years of ignoring the problem the Massachusetts state legislature has finally acted this year. First a joint study commission was appointed with Senate award at its head then in the weird and wonderful ways of Massachusetts politics. Both Governor John Bull ph and the General Court drafted similar legislation centered towards a bill which he explains here planned for more money than was finally authorized. The total cost for Massachusetts will be a state bond issue approximately two hundred million dollars which will be supplied at the rate of 20 millions per year
over a 10 year span. So that the. Problem can be solved I would think in about ten years. Sewage industrial waste and other polluted pollution problems in Massachusetts would eventually cost about a billion dollars total. The compromise bill that passed the legislature in its closing moments called for a one hundred fifty million dollars in a bond issue and follow the same general formula as governor Rockefeller's New York playing. In addition. Boston's infamous Charles River where Harvard and MIT sculling crews try desperately not to fall in. Came in for some extra help. Secretary of the interior you doall horrified by the state of the Charles awarded a special grant which he and all Boston hope will finally clean up that river. The eastern states have a distinctly different water problem than those in the West in the east. Water has always
been overly abundant and today's pollution problem exists precisely because no one could believe the supply would ever run short. And of course there still is no water shortage problem in the east just a shortage of clean water. The exact opposite is true in the West and the Southwest. Water has often been in short supply there is consequently precious and more carefully protected. This consciousness has been a part of the heritage of every westerner. Norman B. HUME director of the Los Angeles bureau of sanitation. So many cases where water is been for use and taken in buckets and home grown long distance either by pipeline or in some cases even by tank cars. Water is a very important part of the consciousness of every Western woman in Southern California. There is a way of life completely foreign to the originally semi arid land
and water importation was the basis for the transformation. But even though California's water consciousness is much better developed than her sister in eastern states water pollution has intruded both into the recreational rivers and ocean and into the ground water used for drinking. Frank M. stead chief division of environmental sanitation California State Health Department remembers starting and. Extending pretty much up in the early 40s. It was a practice to. Discharge sewage. Surface waters of the state. Without treatment treatment. And without this infection
before effectively infected. So I think the situation. Could really describe that charges. As well as an eye save for a direct human contact. Beginning in the mid 40s. Important recreational or potential surface water it was. Readily apparent. That. Policy began to emerge for the first time keeping. The waters of the state a natural setting. For direct contact. Now it's something that you can drink stay away from the kitchen sink. I mean that you throw into the bag they drink at lunch and oh say and so California acted
recognizing that our water pollution problem for them disastrous proportions was threatening the resulting anti pollution program as explained by Raymond M. hurtle executive officer of California Regional Water Quality Control Board. Number four the state of California and 49 stablished a water pollution control act in the state legislature. They control the pollution accomplished on a regional basis by the establishment of nine regional boards and a state. The more you were appointed by the governor and were responsible to the governor. Within each given region the water pollution control board would prescribe
requirements for discharges which would prevent the pollution of the waters of the state. They would be round waters surface waters or marine water. How much of a pollution problem actually exists today in California. Frank stead of the state environmental sanitation division answers that question and fills in the recent developments as far as. Salt water is the same so Scoble. San Diego and so forth. About. Years ago special legislation. Standards for salt water contact sparked.
The same bacteriological standards for fresh water. As a measure of safety. Also responders from other parts. Fresh water. Kept out of the water. This particular process. Developing new bacteriological. Which under.
Normal cultural area will have a standard. Applied to a substantially entire body of fresh waters in the state. Lakes large lakes do not present a problem as a policy discharges. Bodies are water kept above reproach one might say. California has a policy. Of having certain designated safe areas for outdoor recreation. But I have the entire body of water any water that
has water of the space that the public can come in contact maintain at this level. With a couple of exceptions already. Substantially achieve this goal. The Regional Water Quality Control Boards have the power to enforce water standards as Raymond hurtle reports. The enforcement program of the state is that if the requirements of the original board are not met the staff of the board will cry to seek a correction and get the discharge or get put in the necessary facilities to ensure that the requirements are met at all times. If they discharge or does not do this their original board would adopt a cease and desist order which would tell a discharge or that he had to take steps to meet the requirements of the barn. If they cease and desist order was violated then the matter would be
referred to the superior courts to seek an injunction against the discharge. At this time it would become the province of the court as a New York State there are few instances of industries leaving California rather then clean up its share of the water pollution. In common with other coast states with underground water parts of California have another pollution problem. The intrusion of salt water into the underground drinking water supply. Again Mr. Hurtle as the people have ground water is out of the bait. They have what is called an overdraft on the nation. This means that they're pumping out more water than they were being replenished by the natural rate of all. And in our period of groud the water table had been going down along the coastline where the freshwater without an elevation sufficient to prevent seawater from coming as they drop the seawater was at a higher
elevation and started to force itself in many areas. The Department of Water Resources and the Los Angeles County Flood Control District have been working on this problem for many years and have developed a system of what and who which water is really injected to build up my pressure to prevent the seawater from further including into the area. The system is run quite successful.
Who hasn't. San Francisco Bay with its perfect blue waters lapping at the feet of the shimmering white towered city and the delicate span of the Golden Gate Bridge against San Francisco Bay is one of the Great California beauties and yet recent pollution threatens. It's. Also water and. Water washed over
the past decade or so. Very. Sizeable percentage of what was the original water service. Plan Service speaking again is Frank. State. Legislature of California study commission. There's 65 sation Conservation and Development Commission. And control for the operations of encroachment by fairly fast. At stake two kinds of
concepts. The concept. Best solution as against the best solution as interest that the total population of persons. And when you try to reconcile these two things in terms. The fundamental philosophical questions that we face in the whole water quality picture the interest of the total populace. And the high quality of environment. As against a solution. The least expenditure of dollars for our treatment of waste and
treatment of water because of the urgent necessity for more water in California. The state has been experimenting with both desalinization of ocean water and with complete purification and reuse of waste water. Both methods are in regular use in the state's water system. Reuse seems to have the not as the most practical method of increasing water yield and California is the state most advanced in this technique. Norman HUME of the Los Angeles sanitation department tells about the Santee lakes a recreational area completely manmade from purified waste. The Santee district is upstream from the system. SENNOTT San Diego metropolitan water area and they chose to completely treat effluent from a sand corporation
town and percolate the reclaimed water through the natural river sands there. Then that lifted up for a session of the ornamental lakes some of which now are open for water sports swimming and even for fishing. And that's doing very well. The thought of swimming in reclaimed waste water is not the most pleasant idea but San Diego residents are fully aware of the Santee experiment and now the initial distaste having worn off for quite casual about it. However farfetched the reuse idea seems now there's little doubt that the type of complete purification of wastes will see a great deal of use in the future. OVER THE NATION. What if pollution exists in every major river system in the United States and
all states are beginning to think seriously about controlling it. Even Florida considered almost virgin territory has pollution problems dependent mainly on septic tanks for waste collection. The state is just now realizing its need for treatment plants. In Florida however pollution can be arrested before it overwhelms emphasizes Florida Representative Paul Rogers. Because we have not yet attracted large heavy industries where there is great problem of abatement already existing then perhaps laws can be adjusted to the various areas on the prevention idea which I think our communities are very much aware of. Our economy is such that we are very much concerned with keeping water fresh air clean.
And by doing it with a few ordinances and state laws and of course some cooperation with some programs of the federal government where hopeful that we can prevent all this pollution from developing in our state and if we act now I think we can and we're beginning to. W the Westinghouse Broadcasting Company has presented the pollution explosion 10 parts study of the increasing pollution of America's air and water. The series was produced by Robert Franklin and recorded by Stephanie Shelton executive producer Jay kaila. Here Again. John Daly. The Great Lakes are in danger of being lost for any recreational purpose. A large part of Lake Erie is already considered a dead sea. Father West Lake Tahoe truly one of the few remaining diamond Pura
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Pollution explosion
Episode Number
Producing Organization
Westinghouse Broadcasting Company
Group W Productions
Contributing Organization
University of Maryland (College Park, Maryland)
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Episode Description
This program presents a variety of speeches, music clips, and commentary to analyze the pollution problem in the United States.
Other Description
A discussion of environment-related issues.
Media type
Host: Daly, John Charles, 1914-1991
Producing Organization: Westinghouse Broadcasting Company
Producing Organization: Group W Productions
AAPB Contributor Holdings
University of Maryland
Identifier: 68-8-3 (National Association of Educational Broadcasters)
Format: 1/4 inch audio tape
Duration: 00:27:35
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Chicago: “Pollution explosion; 3,” 1967-12-19, University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC, accessed August 12, 2022,
MLA: “Pollution explosion; 3.” 1967-12-19. University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Web. August 12, 2022. <>.
APA: Pollution explosion; 3. Boston, MA: University of Maryland, American Archive of Public Broadcasting (GBH and the Library of Congress), Boston, MA and Washington, DC. Retrieved from