Environmental Protection Agency

Level of Cancer Chemicals Related to Sterigenics May be Incorrect, EPA Says

Neighbors voiced their concerns about cancer risks mentioned in the environmental document.

The Environmental Protection Agency made a bombshell announcement Wednesday about Sterigenics--the lab accused of putting out cancer causing fumes in the suburbs.

The EPA says it may have mistakenly reported higher levels of the toxic gas.

Previously NBC 5 told you about the concerns over Sterigenics, the medical instrument sterilization company accused of releasing potentially dangerous levels of a chemical called ethelyne oxide into the atmosphere.

Residents in the Willowbrook and Darien area have been extremely concerned with that news---many demanding that the facility be closed.

The United States EPA said it made a mistake in the way it's been measuring ethylene oxide.

That the agency's monitors may have reported higher ambient levels of ethylene oxide than actually exist, the EPA said in a statement.

Specifically---they say their monitoring equipment and lab tests can mistakenly identify another chemical---Trans-2-butene---as ethylene oxide. And that means air monitoring done in the area prior to last month may have shown higher concentrations of ethylene oxide than were actually in the air.

Because of the firestorm this is certain to trigger, EPA says it will host a community forum next Thursday night in Willowbrook.

Attorney General Lisa Madigan and the DuPage County state's attorney have both filed lawsuits to shut Sterigenics down.

Residents of that community, fearing the chemical has triggered outbreaks of cancer in the area---have staged noisy protests against the company.

Contact Us