Not talking to the folks who live on the Gulf Coast, particularly those close to Galveston. I have received some email with unverified claims of coverups and press blackouts concerning the number who died. But more disturbing even than that is Julie Pippert’s recent post linking up the number of Superfund sites in her area:
I live by quite a few superfund sites—chemical and manufacturing plants. In fact, my area is home to “the nation’s largest concentration of chemical plants and refineries,” many of which are not even close to being in compliance with the EPA and other safety standards.
Were they inundated too?
What all else has my area been exposed to as a result of breaches from the hurricane?
I already know my area was unsafe and unhealthy, before Ike hit. I’ve blogged about it many times, testified before the EPA in an open hearing, and pestered when, who where and how I can to improve health and safety conditions in my community.
In my humble speculative opinion, there are a major vulnerabilities here:
* citizen vulnerability due to unsafe plants and businesses that are not in compliance with standards
* those selfsame plants and businesses were in vulnerable spots hit hard by Hurricane Ike
* what confidence or reassurance can residents have that their only “hazard” is from “wastewater plants?”
* the biggest vulnerability? Republican politicians who enable these businesses to keep the standards lower than is best and safest for people who live there, and who do not enforce compliance—right before an election.
Really, let’s get some reporters on this. Lives may depend upon it.
- Untainted Oceans
- Friday Light