"The federal government is about to release its final, $500 million cleanup plan for the Gowanus Canal, one of New York City’s two Superfund sites, a long-awaited moment in the effort to cleanse more than a century of environmental abuse."
"But even on the eve of its purging, the Gowanus Canal remains very much a garbage dump for the city. Along the banks of the canal one recent morning, just a tin can’s toss from the oily green waters, a giant claw grabbed at a tower of scrap metal, like a crane in an arcade game. In the lot over, delivery trucks idled behind oil storage tanks. Near them, concrete mixers cranked, churned their ingredients and coughed up dust.
'Somebody needs to heat homes and recycle metal and clean out garbage,' said Mike Petrosino, co-owner of a fifth-generation, family-owned business that operates Benson Metal, one of two scrap-metal yards that abut the canal and use it for loading and unloading barges. 'The canal acts as an infrastructure that supports the city.'"