Demand Tougher Air Pollution Restrictions for Louisiana Industrial Plant

Air Pollution

Target: The US Environmental Protection Agency

Goal: Place stronger pollution restrictions on industrial plants in Louisiana

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently released a decision to weaken pollution restrictions for a polyvinyl chloride plant (a plant that produces PVC plastic materials) located in Mossville, Louisiana as well as one located in Houston, Texas. The new restrictions are significantly less stringent than the established rules that apply to 15 additional PVC plants scattered across the US.

A federal survey conducted in 1999 and repeated in 2006 concluded that residents of Mossville were carrying on average three times as many dioxons, or carcinogenic material, in their bloodstream as a typical American. The community has long been subjected to health hazards as a result of industrial pollution. The nonprofit Earthjustice has filed a lawsuit against the EPA, demanding that the pollution restrictions for the Mossville plant be reconsidered and strengthened. Sign the petition below to express support for the efforts of Earthjustice members and to protect vulnerable communities from health risks and environmental degradation.

The Mossville area schools rank among the top 2% of US schools with the worst air. However, it is estimated that the current restrictions that apply to most PVC-producing plants would reduce the toxins emitted from the Mossville plant by about 87%.

“This was once a wonderful, thriving, beautiful community, where people could live well,” said Monique Harden, codirector of Advocates for Environmental Human Rights in New Orleans. “But the way these industrial facilities operate, there is a complete disregard for human life.”

By studying US census data and air pollution levels, researchers have recently revealed that low-income and minority groups tend to receive the most exposure to air pollution. Dorothy Felix of Mossville Environmental Action Now sees the research reflected in her town. “We are an African-American community. They prey on communities like this,” she said. “But we are going to continue to fight until they hear our voices and until justice is served.”

It is time that the EPA addresses the disparities in air quality in the US that threaten the lives of residents in communities like Mossville. By signing the petition below, you will help to demand that the EPA places stronger restrictions on the Mossville PVC plant in order to uphold the right to clean air for vulnerable US communities.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Environmental Protection Agency,

I understand that you recently released a decision to weaken pollution restrictions for a polyvinyl chloride plant located in Mossville, Louisiana and that the new restrictions are significantly less stringent than the established rules that apply to other PVC-producing plants in other areas of the US.

A federal survey conducted in 1999 and repeated in 2006 concluded that residents of Mossville were carrying on average three times as many dioxons, or carcinogenic material, in their bloodstream as a typical American. But it is estimated that application of the rules governing pollution for other US PVC plants would reduce the emissions from the Mossville plant by 87%.

I am worried that the issue of disparities in air quality across the US, which subject low-income and minority communities to higher levels of air pollution, is not receiving adequate concern. I hope that you will consider the injustice that ensues from allowing only affluent communities to protect their residents from the health affects of air pollution. I urge you to replace the weak pollution restrictions that will apply to the Mossville PVC plant with more stringent rules in order to extend the right to clean air to even the most vulnerable US communities.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

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385 Signatures

  • Eric von Borstel
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