More Than Two Decades as GE’s Communications Partner on Major Hudson River Cleanup
The Challenge: In 2009, after 30 years of public and scientific debate, GE began dredging PCB-contaminated sediments from the Hudson River in New York State, one of the largest and most logistically complex environmental cleanup projects ever undertaken in the United States.
The Outcome: For nearly 25 years, Behan Communications has managed GE's Hudson River community, media and government relations program. Our work continued during the dredging, which took place along a 40-mile stretch of river with active recreational and commercial traffic and lined on both shores by hundreds of private properties.
With dredges excavating river sediment 24 hours a day, six months a year, Behan implemented a strategy to communicate clearly with elected officials, residents, property owners, interest groups, the media and other stakeholders.
Various communication tools were developed and implemented to support the program, including a project-specific website providing the public with progress reports, construction schedules, video and photo imagery of the work, and environmental data; door-to-door contact with stakeholders; public meetings to provide information and answer questions; and a 24-hour telephone hotline.
Behan has provided strategic counsel, spokesmanship and public advocacy, representing GE at hundreds of public meetings in New York State and in dozens of televised, radio and public debates. Behan regularly briefs regulatory officials, community groups and elected officials as well as editorial boards and journalists from local, regional, national and international media, including The New York Times, The Associated Press, Reuters, The Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, USA Today, Financial Times and CNN.
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