The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

House Subcommittee OKs Toxic Waste-Burning Bill

Bill would allow uncontrolled burning of industrial wastes near homes and schools

Today the Energy and Power Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee passed H.R. 2250, a bill that would allow thousands of industrial facilities to freely burn tires, chemicals, solvents, plastics, and other toxic and harmful materials without having to take any steps to control the resulting toxic pollution. The bill, which would also excuse industrial facilities from any obligation to monitor or report their toxic emissions will go to the House Energy and Commerce Committee for a full-committee markup and vote next week.
The following is a statement by Earthjustice Associate Legislative Counsel Stephanie Maddin:
"Today the House Energy and Power Subcommittee passed a terrible bill, H.R. 2250, which essentially gives thousands of large industrial polluters carte blanche to burn all sorts of nasty and toxic materials, without having to control or even monitor the chemicals and pollutants they will spew into the air around them. This bill would increase levels of toxic pollution that are already causing unacceptable rates of cancer, respiratory disease, and other serious adverse health effects in thousands of communities. Low-income communities and communities of color will especially suffer because of their proximity to the industrial facilities that generate and burn these wastes. Exempting big businesses from responsibility for their pollution at the expense of the American people and their health is not only unfair, it's unconscionable. We hope that the House Energy and Commerce Committee will consider the real-world impacts of this bill on American families when the time comes to vote on it next week."

Earthjustice is a non-profit public interest law firm dedicated to protecting the magnificent places, natural resources, and wildlife of this earth, and to defending the right of all people to a healthy environment. We bring about far-reaching change by enforcing and strengthening environmental laws on behalf of hundreds of organizations, coalitions and communities.