Bullseye Glass is suspending its use of cadmium and arsenic for now, following concerns by state regulators over alarming concentrations of those substances in the air around the Southeast Portland facility. Co-owner Daniel Schwoerer emailed a short statement to the Mercury this morning:
"As of yesterday we have suspended the production of all cadmium and arsenic-bearing glasses until we better understand the information that you have brought forward."
In a brief phone interview, Schwoerer reiterated something he said Monday: "I'm totally surprised by DEQ's findings. We have worked with DEQ for 40 years and were never once told there were state benchmarks to meet. It's all a major surprise."
He declined to answer whether he still had faith in the air pollution control device commonly known as a "baghouse" that DEQ requires Bullseye Glass to deploy.
Asked in general about the by-products of making glass using cadmium and arsenic, Schwoerer said, "There shouldn't be any by-products. The solution goes all into the glass. We're not knowingly doing anything wrong."
Schwoerer then ended the interview, saying that he had a room full of Bullseye employees waiting to hear from him. That he had to do "damage control."
Update, 11:32 am: Bullseye released the following statement on Facebook earlier today.
Soil Near Bullseye Glass Contains Arsenic and Cadmium—And Other Things Officials Told Parents Thursday