Target: Senator Barbara Boxer, chairwoman of the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works
Goal: Oppose the Chemical Safety Improvement Act
A bill co-sponsored by Senator David Vitter aims at obstructing the regulation of hazardous chemicals used in fossil fuel operations. The bill is called the Chemical Safety Improvement Act, and already a number of public health and environmental organizations have taken a stance against it. The bill would work by separating all regulated chemicals into two categories, “low priority” and “high priority,” and would prevent the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from conducting any kind of health or safety research on the “low priority” chemicals.
It’s clear to see that this bill would not improve conditions of public health and safety, or environmental protection, in any possible way. In fact, a recent chemical spill in West Virginia caused by a fracking operation led to a sharp rise in hospitalization, due to a chemical that experts say would be classified as “low priority” under this new bill. More absurd still, how can we know if a chemical has been classified properly as low or high priority if those considered to be low priority cannot be examined or tested?
This bill is a fairly obvious attempt to deregulate fracking and coal mining operations by inventing a false separation between dangerous and less dangerous chemicals. The EPA should have the authority to test anything that could affect the environment or public health. Creating an off-limits category based on absolutely no science at all only creates a much greater risk for public health and the environment, and is only in the interest of short-term profits for major fossil fuel companies. Sign the petition to pressure the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works to oppose this bill.
Dear Senator Boxer,
A bill supported by Senator David Vitter, of your own committee on Environment and Public Works, attempts to deregulate fossil fuel operations with no possible benefit to the public or the environment. The Chemical Safety Improvement Act aims to separate hazardous chemicals into two categories, “low priority” and “high priority,” and to prevent the EPA from testing or examining anything in the “low priority” category. Limiting the EPA’s research can only lead to more ignorance about the actual dangers of fracking and coal mining.
This bill was written with the clear intention of obscuring the true risks of fossil fuel mining operations. In fact, a recent fracking chemical spill in West Virginia led to a sharp increase in hospitalization, due to a chemical that experts claim would be “low priority” under this new legislation. Numerous environmental and public health organizations already oppose this bill, and if you care about the general health of your citizens, then you must oppose it as well.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: greensefa via Flickr