November 2015
A newsletter of Blackford County Concerned Citizens developed in partnership with the Hoosier Environmental Council
In This Issue
Cleanup of Hartford Iron
IPFW Partnership
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BCCC Mission
The mission of Blackford County Concerned Citizens is to improve the quality of life of Blackford County, Indiana residents by reducing the incidence of diseases, primarily through citizen action to investigate the diseases that are prevalent and by advocating to have these diseases investigated.
Crowdfunding Site Available!

You can now help BCCC continue this work with a credit card or Paypal donation, and your donation will be matched at 50% from the Lilly Endowment's generous GIFT Phase VI initiative.  For every dollar you give, BCCC will receive $1.50.

We are working to make Blackford County healthier and we can't do it without you.  Visit  and click on 'Donate now'.

Make sure to write "For BCCC" in the message box.  Thank you for your support.
Information Meeting on the Hartford Iron Cleanup

Blackford County Concerned Citizens in partnership with the Hoosier Environmental Council (HEC) has reviewed the public record on the Hartford Iron cleanup, and on August 3, we met with officials at the Indiana Department of Environmental Management to discuss it.  We would like to share what we have learned with the community.

We have included a brief synopsis on the BCCC website, but we are also inviting you to hear about it in person and ask any questions you may have.  A representative of one of the companies doing the cleanup has also been invited to help answer questions.

WHEN:Saturday, November 7th
10:00 AM
WHERE:City Hall in Hartford City
Excavation Started at Hartford Iron

Hartford Iron and neighborhood_ satellite view 2012
Hartford Iron is undergoing a cleanup overseen by the EPA and the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM).  Since the soil at Hartford Iron is contaminated with a number of toxic substances, Blackford County Concerned Citizens is closely monitoring the cleanup process.  See BCCC's first report here.

In early October, the environmental consulting firm Keramida started excavating a portion of the contaminated soil on the south side of the Hartford Iron property.  They should be taking steps to control the excavation so that contaminated soil doesn't drift on to neighboring properties.  If you are concerned that dust and soil from Hartford Iron are spreading beyond their property line, you can ask about the problem of fugitive dust or file a fugitive dust complaint by calling the Complaint Coordinator for the Indiana Department of Environmental Management at (800) 451-6027 ext. 24464 or file a complaint electronically.
Do You Have Abandoned Oil or Gas Wells Nearby? 

Abandoned oil and gas wells can have an impact on well water.  BCCC is offering to test well water, and if a problem is detected, you may be eligible for state-funded plugging of the oil and gas wells.  If you live in the northern half of Blackford County and have a private water well, please contact Indra Frank at to sign up for testing. 
The map below was created for BCCC by students from IU-Purdue Ft. Wayne.  The green diamonds indicate known locations of abandoned oil and gas wells.

Tips for Well Owners from the NGWA 

Everyone in Blackford County relies on ground water, whether from their own private well or from the city wells that provide city water.  Contaminants left on the ground or in the soil can  contaminate the underlying ground water.  Ground water is constantly moving, so once it is  contaminated that contamination can spread.  The National Ground Water Association offers the following tips for well owners to help keep your well water clean:
  • Move possible contamination sources a safe distance from the wellhead
  • Get current on your septic system inspection and cleaning
  • Get your annual water well system inspection
  • Properly decommission any abandoned wells using a professional.
There is more information on protecting ground water at
Statewide Environmental Issues 

Please join Hoosier Environmental Council for the 8th Annual Greening the Statehouse, the largest annual sustainability gathering in Indiana!

WHEN:Saturday, November 14, 2015, 10:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
(Registration and networking begin at 9:00)
WHERE:University of Indianapolis
Schwitzer Student Center

Register at

This year's keynote speaker will be Lisa Evans of Earthjustice. Ms. Evans is viewed by many as America's leading expert on coal ash pollution. She has also held positions with the Clean Air Task Force and United States Environmental Protection Agency.

At Greening the Statehouse, you will:
  • Engage with expert panelists, including elected officials and civic leaders, on key environmental issues facing Indiana, such as water pollution, environmental justice, clean energy and sustainable agriculture.
  • Stand side by side with Hoosiers from all around the state to get informed and energized as we prepare for the 2016 Indiana General Assembly.
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