NEW YORK, Dec. 26 (UPI) -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has refused requests by local officials to police the demolition of the Deutsche Bank in lower Manhattan.
The EPA has backtracked from its earlier pledge to coordinate the responsibilities of all city, state and federal agencies involved in the razing of the building damaged by water and contaminated by toxic dust following the attacks on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, the New York Post reported Sunday.
"This is a half-assed effort and doesn't give me confidence that people will be adequately protected," said David Newman, an industrial hygienist and member of the EPA's advisory panel on Lower Manhattan.
Rep. Jerrold Nadler, a Democrat who represents Lower Manhattan in Congress, said the Lower Manhattan Development Corp., now owns the Deutsche Bank building and he wrote the EPA asking it to take the lead role in the demolition, but that it refused.
"This is exactly what happened after Sept. 11 with the EPA ducking its responsibility," Nadler said.