EPA whistleblower says agency misled on health hazards of 9/11 dust

A U.S. EPA whistleblower has gone public with accusations that the agency downplayed the health hazards of dust from the collapsed World Trade Center. EPA senior scientist Cate Jenkins — who has long clashed with her employer — says the agency relied on misleading test reports in 2002 and 2003. A few months after 9/11, the U.S. Geological Survey found that the dust was highly alkaline, some of it as corrosive as drain cleaner, and even capable of causing burns. But the EPA used data from independent New York University scientists, who found that while more than 95 percent of the dust was high-alkaline large particles, smaller particles, which are more likely to be inhaled deeply, were pH neutral. Recovery workers and residents have complained of various ailments since the attack, which some doctors attribute to high-alkaline dust.