On Friday, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency sent a letter to environmental and community groups who challenged its 2012 air rule for polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plants announcing that it will reconsider this rule that failed to adequately limit air pollution nation-wide and singled out two PVC plants in Mossville, Louisiana and Deer Park, Texas for the most lax limits and worst protection. The EPA’s decision is great news for communities who are burdened by this toxic air pollution.
Breaking News: Assumption Parish officials are ordering an immediate evacuation of the Bayou Corne area, effective immediately, parish Police Jury President Marty Triche said Friday evening.
The “potential failiure” of an inactive and plugged Texas Brine Co. LLC salt-mining cavern is likely the cause of the "slurry area" and Gov. Jindal has declared a state of emergency.
When it rains it flares. Lightning from a thunderstorm yesterday led to an unusually large flare at Dow Chemical Co. in Plaquemine, LA. Local residents note that flaring during inclement weather happens all too often.
This morning (March 22, 2012), Just a little over one month after the EPA announced new rules on regulating pollution from plants producing polyvinyl chloride, an explosion, chemical release, and fire was reported at Westlake Chemical's Geismar Vinyls Complex near Geismar, LA in Ascension Parish.
"Incidents like this one highlight why LEAN has worked hard for 26 years to demand that the industrial facilities in Louisiana be held to the strictest environmental and safety standards possible," said Marylee Orr, Executive Director of Louisiana Environmental Action Network (LEAN), "Our experiences have shown us that fair but stringent and consistent oversight and regulation is necessary to reduce the number of these kinds of incidents as well as 'everyday' emissions. It is not too much to ask that the health and safety of our communities be protected."
While the fire is reported to be under control, residents are concerned about the possibility of exposure to the chemicals released during the incident. Residents are also concerned by any ongoing releases that may have resulted from the explosion and fire.
Jean Kelly, spokesperson for the Department of Environmental Quality said, "the plant was releasing vinyl chloride monomer, hydrochloric acid, chlorine and hydrochloric acid solution," in an interview with the Times-Picayune.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program released data for the calendar year 2010. The 6 greenhouse gases required to be reported consist of carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and the fluorinated gases PFC-14, PFC-116 and HFC-23. In the United States, carbon dioxide accounted for 95% of the greenhouse gas emissions, methane accounted for 4% and nitrous oxide and fluorinated gases 1%.