Stop Walmart’s Repeated Offenses Against the Environment

walmartgrn

Target: Mike Duke, CEO of Walmart

Goal: Get Walmart to abide by environmental laws

Walmart recently pleaded guilty to dumping hazardous fertilizers and chemicals in the waters of California and Missouri and is facing criminal charges. The company faced similar charges in 2010, and despite spokesmen’s claims that Walmart’s hazardous waste policies have evolved, the same thing has happened in 2013 and now the retail giant will pay $81.6 million in fines for violating the Clean Water Act and other E.P.A. regulations. If fines cannot stop Walmart from breaking environmental regulations, defamation may be the only way to leverage the retain giant into adopting eco-friendly business practices. Walmart should be criticized for breaking environmental laws and polluting water in California and Missouri.

The current case against Walmart began when a health official witnessed an employee pouring bleach down the drain, according to The Guardian. The state of California conducted further investigations and found the company guilty of improperly disposing liquid pollutants and solid waste in 16 different counties. Walmart also reportedly sent hazardous materials to return centers without completing safety documentation. The substantial fine the company will pay also covers charges in Missouri. The plea agreements come after nearly a decade-long investigation involving more than 20 prosecutors and 32 environmental groups. In 2010, Walmart had to pay $27.6 million in similar circumstances to address allegations in California that led to the overhaul of its hazardous waste compliance program nationwide.

Although the fine is substantial, it is less than one tenth of one percent of the profits Walmart made in 2012 alone. After dumping chemicals in 16 California counties for years, the company can simply write off the fine as a cost of doing business. According to the Supreme Court, corporations are people, yet they are not subject to the same criminal justice system as real people. Walmart can not be put on probation, thrown in jail, or be forced to shut its doors even if its conduct puts people’s lives at risk.  Walmart should not only be punished for their crimes by being fined, but also be heavily criticized for abusing their rights and putting their consumers at risk.

PETITION LETTER

Dear Mike Duke,

A recent case against Walmart resulted in your company pleading guilty to dumping hazardous fertilizers and chemicals in California and Missouri. After the devastating factory collapse in Bangladesh, where the company failed to enforce acceptable safety standards, Walmart’s public image has been harmed. Despite spokesmen’s claims that Walmart’s hazardous waste policies have evolved, this case is similar to another one in 2010 when Walmart had to pay $27.6 million to address allegations in California that led to the overhaul of its hazardous waste compliance program nationwide. This combined with the devastating factory collapse in Bangladesh, where your company failed to enforce acceptable safety standards, Walmart’s public image has been greatly affected. Walmart should be criticized for continuing to break environmental laws and not becoming a more responsible corporation.

This fine comes after nearly a decade-long investigation involving more than 20 prosecutors and 32 environmental groups. After Walmart has been criminally dumping chemicals in 16 California counties for years, the company can simply write off the fine as a cost of doing business. Walmart should not only be punished for their crimes by being fined, but also be heavily criticized for abusing their corporate person rights and putting their consumers at risk.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: thegreenpages via flickr

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3 Comments

  1. In addition to harming the environment, Wal-Mart is also harming animals by using gestation crates for pigs raised for meat. After many protests it still continues.

  2. Dave Voisey says:

    I’m a UK resident but we have Asda a local subsidary of Wallmart. What the parent company does affects us and I will do all I can to publicise these shameful offences.
    I find it incomprehensible that the Waltons and the other directors can calously sit around their boardroom table and allow so many wrong-doing to occure in their company.

  3. J. Barnes says:

    WalMart is a person; JAIL THEM!

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