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Chemical Security Legislation Clears Key House Subcommittee

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<-- Chemical Terrorism and Security

Source: U.S. Pirg

For Immediate Release: 2009-10-14
Contact: Liz Hitchcock, Public Health Advocate (202) 461-3826, Washington, D. C.

Washington, D.C.: Chemical Security Legislation Clears Key House Subcommittee

WASHINGTON, October 14, 2009 — The House Energy and Environment Subcommittee passed the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Act of 2009 (H.R. 2868) and the Drinking Water System Security Act (H.R. 3258).

U.S. PIRG Public Health Advocate Liz Hitchcock had the following statement:

"We applaud Chairman Markey and the subcommittee for taking strong action to protect American communities from dangerous chemical plants. One hundred facilities endanger more than a million people in the event of an accident or attack; more than 7000 facilities endanger thousands.

"Together, the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Act of 2009 and the Drinking Water System Security Act begin to take a common sense approach to the deficiencies in chemical plant safety and security, long identified by experts as a national security lapse.

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"Safer and cost-effective alternatives are already in use for many of the most dangerous chemicals. We should not tolerate unnecessary risk to millions of Americans when we know that we can do better, and we should not tolerate further delay in passing this already long overdue protection for America’s communities.

"We applaud the subcommittee for rejecting amendments that would have weakened the bills by eliminating the requirement that the most dangerous facilities implement safer technologies. It would do American communities no good to know that there are alternatives to the hazards at these facilities unless we actually put these common sense solutions to use.

"We look forward to working with the sponsors and the Obama Administration to further improve this legislation as it moves forward in Congress. The American public deserves a chemical security law that protects communities by replacing dangerous chemical operations with feasible safer technologies, integrates employee participation in safety and security initiatives, and protects the ability of state and local governments to implement more stringent health, safety and security requirements."

# # #

U.S. PIRG, the federation of state Public Interest Research Groups, is a non-profit, non-partisan public interest advocacy organization.

Related Articles, Reports and Resources

Congress Deliberating HR 2868 - the Chemical Facilities Anti-Terrorism Act of 2009.

Chemical Security Legislation Clears Key House Subcommittee.

Chemical Security & Drinking Water Security Legislation Advances in House.

Map of the Nation’s 101 Most Dangerous Chemical Facilities. Millions at Risk.

Background Material on Chemical Terrorism, Security and Right-to-Know

Markey: Chemical Plants Must Take Common Sense Security Measures.

ATSDR Report on Chemical Terrorism and vulnerability of US Industrial plants.

Worst Case Scenario Terrorism and Toxic Chemical Accident.

Despite Terrorism Threat, Chemical Industry Succeeds In Blocking Federal Security Regulations.

STATEMENT ON PROTECTING PUBLIC HEALTH AND HAZARD REDUCTION (Chemical plants, terrorism, and right-to-know).

ToxicRisk.com is a map-based website that enables users to investigate facilities listed in the EPA Toxic Release Inventory (TRI), number of schools within 1 mile and within 5 miles of the facility, plus links to a database about the toxic history of the facility.

A First Look At The 600K Report: Commercial Chemical Incidents In The United States, 1987 - 1996.

Chemical Plants Are Feared as Targets: Concerns grow that terrorists might hit toxic inventories.

<-- Chemical Terrorism and Security

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