SAVANNAH, Ga (WSAV) — People in the Ogeecheeton neighborhood staged a protest Tuesday morning saying businesses nearby are polluting the community.
The Ogeecheeton neighborhood has been a part of the Savannah community for over 100 years. Savannah Alderwoman Bernetta Lanier was at the demonstration and told News 3 that being so close to industrial sites can cause major health issues.
“We have children with asthma,” Alderwoman Lanier said. “We have elderly people who never smoke with bronchial and lung diseases. People have to wear masks and have sediment that builds up inside of the homes. We have a problem with dust, thick dust, throughout this corridor.”
She also said it all stems from incompatible zoning and residential areas should not be close businesses that create pollution.
“Ogeecheeton is uniquely located between the Clark Block Company that has no type of filters and all of the sediments from that operation comes over into this community,” she said.
She also told News 3 that they need support from city council to get the ball rolling to fix these issues. News 3 asked Mayor Van Johnson of Savannah about the concerns of the neighborhood. He told us he tried helping in the past.
“I have personally engaged the US Environmental Protection Agency, the state EPA, the Harambe House and the Department of Health to determine whether what was floating in the air was harmful or beyond any environmental standards…,” Mayor Johnson said.
He said the federal government did not find anything that could be ruled out as an environmental hazard. However, he said neighbors shouldn’t let their guard down.
“They should be concerned, I am concerned,” he continued. “It is adjacent to the railroad and on the other side they make blocks and other things. In some of those areas, there are high instances of bronchial issues. So, they should be quite concerned.”
Mayor Johnson said he will continue to bring people to the table to help the community as much as possible.