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The Love Canal which is located in Niagara Falls was created in the 1890s by a businessman by the name of William T Love who wanted to facilitate hydroelectric power by connecting the upper and lower parts of the falls Loves plan fell apart when he lacked financing and cheaper methods of obtaining power became available The Love Canal was abandoned and shortly afterward the city of Niagara Falls turned the canal into a summer swimming hole Beauchamp p 106 The Hooker Electrochemical Company which is today the Occidental Chemical Corporation built its first plant in Niagara Falls in 1905 and in 1942 received permission by the state of New York to use the canal for chemical dumping Beauchamp p 106 The company which manufactures plastics pesticides chlorine caustic soda and fertilizers considered the site ideal because it was located in an underdeveloped unpopulated area and because the canal had highly impermeable clay walls that retained the chemicals with virtually no penetration Research suggested that the canals walls allowed only a third of an inch of water over a 25-year period Beauchamp p 106 The problem with the Love Canal began in 1953 when the Niagara Falls School Board wanted to buy the land from Hooker Chemical for a new school Hooker advised against the purchase warned the school board about the toxic wastes on Love Canal and allowed the board to visit the property in order to convince them that the site was unsuitable for development Unfortunately the school board was not convinced and threatened Hooker with eminent domain Hooker seeing no other choice but to give in to the board sold it for 100 with a 17 line restriction in the deed to warn the board of the dangers and to turn over future liability to the school httpwwwglobalservenetspireatomcchistoryhtm Despite Hookers warnings the property was developed and during construction thousands of cubic yards of topsoil were removed This is
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