"A local company that once helped the West Virginia town of Minden thrive had for for decades dumped untold amounts of industrial chemicals nearby. Years after that coal-equipment manufacturer shuttered and the rest of the local coal economy fell into decline, those toxic chemicals remained.
Now the federal government is saying it will make cleaning up Minden a priority. On Monday, the Environmental Protection Agency finally added a site in the tiny town of 250 people to its national priority list for contaminated Superfund sites. The government says it prioritize cleaning up a former manufacturing site for Shaffer Equipment Co. and nearby areas around Arbuckle Creek, where the company used polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, which had been added to oil used by electrical equipment until 1984.
For years, Minden residents said they were being overlooked by federal authorities, even as many of them were diagnosed with an alarming number of cancers and other health issues. Local activists told The Post's Brady Dennis for a profile he wrote of the community they found about a third of Minden residents have died of or been diagnosed with cancer in recent years."