June 10, 2024

Emily Garcia, The Post and Courier Greenville

Toxic waste has plagued this Greenville community. Cleanup still may be years away.

It’s easy to drive past the overgrown fields at the corner of East Bramlett Road and West Washington Street, unaware of the danger hidden beneath the lush greenery.

Under layers of soil, pockets of coal tar pollution contaminate the groundwater near the Reedy River with cancer-causing chemicals.

Greenville’s historically Black and underprivileged Southernside community has endured the contamination for more than half a century. Neighbors, who have seen a flood of recent investment in the industrial area just west of downtown, said they’ve waited long enough to see a cleanup.

Now, state regulators tell them it might take another decade.

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