EPA seeks to derail cleanup of coal power plant pollution

20 April, 2017, 11:16 | Author: Leticia Walters

The office also oversees major environmental cleanup projects, including the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, and provided some assistance to residents during the Flint water crisis.

Demetra Turner, 44, a resident of the West Calumet Housing Complex who has yet to leave, urged others to keep pressure on the EPA.

Really, Scott Pruitt? Western Pennsylvanians know enough to recognize when you are blowing (coal) dust when you declare that "the war on coal is done" ("EPA's Pruitt Says He'll Be a Friend to Coal", April 14).

During his visit, Pruitt provided brief comments at a press conference in East Chicago but quickly exited without answering questions from reporters. Not only are the Great Lakes a source of clean drinking water for over 40 million people, but they play a critical role in our economy - from shipping and commerce to tourism and travel.

Last month, the EPA announced it would begin remediation work on almost 200 properties after securing $16 million from the parties responsible for the contamination, which includes high concenrations of lead and arsenic in the soil.

"Any attempt by this administration to close any US EPA regional office will further cripple environmental protection efforts, while also sending a clear signal to polluters to further contaminate the Chesapeake Bay, Great Lakes, Puget Sound, as well as our rivers, streams and wetlands", said American Federation of Government Employees Local 704 President John O'Grady, whose union represents EPA employees.

Pruitt has criticized the EPA for overreach and President Donald Trump's administration has taken steps to roll back stricter environmental regulations put in place over the past eight years.

"They reaffirmed there's no discussion about shutting the Chicago office", Kaplan said.

The private sector is set to get a big boost under this administration, and the latest talk to limit the power of the public sphere involves pushing legal consideration to outside counsel, potentially bypassing the influence of longtime EPA employees in favor of kowtowing to corporate concerns. Some held signs that read "East Chicago Demands Clean Water".

"We can't drink the water". Joe Donnelly, D-South Bend, said Trump's proposed federal budget must still go through congressional review before any cuts or changes are made within the EPA. Housing officials said their goal is to move out all families by May.

"We are truly in the fight of our lives", she said.

Geertsman explained East Chicago and the state of IN have a poor history with treating the city's drinking water for lead.

The people who live there are at risk of lead contamination at every turn.

As for Pruitt's meeting with residents at East Chicago's USS Lead Superfund site, Frank said he and four other residents shared their experiences dealing with the city's contaminated soil and water.

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