For the first time since the 9/11 attack, the federal government is on the verge of recognizing that people who lived near Ground Zero and first responders got cancer from toxic dust from the scene.
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health is expected to announce the findings on the 11th anniversary of the terrorist attack tomorrow.
The institute is responsible for deciding whether cancer should be among the illnesses covered by the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act.
Around 50 cancers are expected to be included.
The ruling will mean thousands of people who are sure they got sick in the aftermath of the outrage will be eligible for compensation.
John Walcott, an NYPD detective who was diagnosed with leukemia in 2003 after working months at Ground Zero and the Fresh Kills landfill said: ‘It’s a bittersweet thing. It took 11 years to do what should have been done a long time ago.’
The Zadroga Act – named after NYPD Detective James Zadroga, who died age 34 after working on the World Trade Center pile – was passed into law two years ago.
Under the Act $2.8 billion was set aside to compensate people made ill by exposure to toxins at the site. Another $1.5 billion has been allocated over five years to fund the World Trade Center Health Program, which treats and monitors about 40,000 first responders.
It originally did not cover cancer because there was not enough evidence linking it to the toxins emitted at Ground Zero.
‘To me, it’s common sense. If you breathe in toxic fumes, you’re going to get cancer,’ said U.S. Rep Carolyn Maloney, a Manhattan Democrat who helped author the bill.
But even Maloney conceded that it is difficult to find hard data proving the connection between cancer and the dust at ground zero. That’s why in crafting the Zadroga Act, lawmakers were careful to include mechanisms that would allow for illnesses to be added based on new scientific research.
This was despite thousands of responders claiming top be sick because of their part in the rescue efforts.
About 400 first responders or people who lived near the site have died from cancer since 9/11, according to the most recent estimates.
With the inclusion of cancer in the program, there will be more victims seeking compensation yet no increase in the $2.77billion fund – meaning individual rewards will be lower.
Thomas Gilmartin, a smoker who suffers from lung disease and sleep apnea, told the Post: ‘They’re going to add cancers, but are they going to add more money to the fund?
‘It’s crazy. Every time, we gotta fight. It’s two years since Obama signed that bill and nobody’s got ten cents.’
The Victim Compensation Fund’s special master, Sheila Birnbaum, has been responsible for evenhandedly distributing $2.7 billion to ground zero responders and others who became ill after being exposed to dust and ash from the smoldering ruins of the World Trade Center. …
The cloud looks like a small nuclear bomb. I realize that many things in toxic dust can cause cancer, but what were the radiation levels? Some say micro-nukes were used to bring down the towers since they would would not have collapsed otherwise.
In 2002, the paper “Study of Traces of Tritium at the World Trade Center” was presented at the American Chemical Society National Meeting. This paper is well known in the “911 Truth Movement” for its presentation of anomalous levels of Tritium discovered at the WTC site 10 days after the attacks. Of the 51 water samples analysed from the WTC complex, Manhattan, local reservoirs and Brooklyn (mainly), two samples from the basement of WTC 6 showed anomalously high levels of Tritium activity.
The authors postulate that this Tritium in the WTC 6 basement came from two sources: Radio Luminescent Exit signs on board the two 767s which crashed into the towers and from Tritium night sights fitted to weapons stored at the site. … The correct implication of the paper therefore is that a third unknown source supplied the high levels of tritium activity detected in the basement of WTC 6 some 10 days later. If it was not another contaminant from some other tritiated source, it can only have occurred by in situ tritiation of water by neutron bombardment.
Remember well the rule that when a government says they are going to start working on a new technology, they’ve already had it secretly, sometimes for many years.
The United States is embarking on a multimillion-dollar expansion of its nuclear arsenal, prompting fears it may lead the world into a new arms race. The Bush administration is pushing ahead with the development of a new generation of weapons, dubbed ‘mini-nukes’, that use nuclear warheads to penetrate underground bunkers. Last week, it gave a quiet yet final go-ahead to a controversial research project into the bunker-buster. The move effectively ends a 10-year ban on research into ‘low-yield’ nuclear weapons. … Since Bush announced a ‘nuclear posture review’ after coming to office, the administration has taken several steps to develop and modernise its nuclear arsenal to deter a wide range of threats, including chemical and biological weapons and what the review called ‘surprising military developments’.
Three Tennessee Valley power stations have been selected to resume production of tritium, a substance used to increase the yield from a nuclear blast. Tritium has not been actively produced in the US for years and this is the first time civilian power plants have been scheduled for military use. …