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  • Writer's pictureValley Clean Air Now

VCAN August, 2023 Community Meeting: Air Filter Distribution Is Back; Health Survey is Ready!

Updated: Aug 13, 2023

Steering Committee Chairperson Qiyam Ansari Sets Agenda for our 8-24-23 Meeting at CEDCC Building, 282 St. Clair Avenue, Clairton, PA @ 6 pm. Join us to share food/refreshments, hear what we've been doing and plan to do.

Qiyam Ansari speaking at the VCAN Press Event outside the Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) Coke Oven Hearings in May, 2022 at the Clairton Municipal Building.

Art Thomas is a member of the VCAN Steering Committee and Air Filter Committee. He also spoke at the May, 2022 ACHD Hearing.

Air Filter Committee Report

Fred Bickerton will present the Air Filter Report. In addition to the Air Filter Committee, Fred is also our Steering Committee Treasurer. VCAN distributed air filters to local residents a couple years ago. Members of the Air Filter Committee have been comparing which air filters are available and how many square feet each filter is recommended to clean.

Committee members will have air filters models available for people to look at and learn about. Fred will explain what filters are available and how to get them. Residents of the Five Boroughs of Clairton, Glassport, Port Vue, Lincoln and Liberty are eligible to receive a filter from VCAN. These residents will need to fill out a request form with information such as name, address and phone number. They must agree to use the filter in their home.

Dave and Cindy Meckel and Johnie Perryman are also Steering Committee members of the Air Filter Committee.

Germaine Gooden-Patterson is a member of the VCAN Steering Committee and the Health Survey Committee. Here she is speaking at the May, 2022 ACHD Hearing.

Health Survey Committee Report

Sinan Dogan will present the report of this Committee. VCAN is lucky to have Sinan on this Committee. He is a University of Pittsburgh graduate student preparing to earn his doctorate degree in Public Health. He has conducted health studies before in the Mon Valley. Sinan has prepared the survey questions in conjunction with a professor at the University of Pittsburgh's School of Public Health.

Just like the Air Filter Distribution program, VCAN is asking our friends and neighbors in the Five Boroughs to complete our Health Survey. On August 24, Sinan will explain the purpose of this survey and present an action plan as to how local residents can fill it out.

Allegheny County Council to Hear VCAN Members' Request to Take Action on Benzene Emissions in Five Boroughs?

Air monitors at eight locations in the Mon Valley began showing excessive concentrations of benzene since January, 2022. Two of these monitors were located at the homes of two different VCAN members! The existence of the benzene has been documented by an air monitoring program operated by the Environmental Integrity Project (EIP) and Carnegie-Mellon University's CREATE Lab. EIP Spokeperson Lisa Marcucci and Ana Hoffman of the CREATE Lab explained the air monitoring results to Allegheny County Council during Public Comment period this past June 20.

Allegheny County Council member, Anita Prizio, represents Aspinwall and Millvale. She is concerned with these elevated benzene readings and spoke with Qiyam Ansari, Fred Bickerton and Tom Bailey, VCAN Steering Committee Secretary, this week via Zoom. She may be willing to introduce a motion to County Council next month that would, if passed, urge the US Environmental Protection Agency to take action at the Clairton Coke Works (CCW) to address these high levels of benzene.

We will follow up this effort as we learn more.

VCAN Secretary Tom Bailey Contact website


telephone: 412.614.0227 weekdays 9am -4pm

282 St. Clair Avenue, Clairton, PA 15025

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