EPA RMP


KTRK via AP

Communities Face Harm When the EPA Dismantles Chemical Safety Protections

, Research Analyst

If chemical facilities are regularly catching on fire or exploding in your neighborhood – like the recent TPC Group plant chemical fire near Houston that dangerously blazed during the Thanksgiving holiday – you would want the government to do something about it. You would want to know what is going on in these facilities. You would want to know what actions are being taken to prevent another catastrophe. And you would want to know that the lives of you, your family, friends and neighbors are being protected by the government through science-based rules and regulations.

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KTRK via AP
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Kentucky Army National Guard members training for disaster response

Five Things You Should Know About EPA’s Proposed Giant Step Backward on the Safety of Chemical Facilities

, director, Center for Science & Democracy

As one of his first acts in office, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt decided to put on hold the implementation of new regulations to improve the safety of chemical facilities around the country. Those regulations, finalized in 2017, called for consideration of safer technologies, better information for communities and first responders that are on the front lines of accidents and other incidents, better planning for accidents and disasters, and improvements in response capabilities including coordination and practice sessions with local first responders. These changes were made to update the so-called Risk Management Plan rule, last significantly modified in 1996. Read more >

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New Report: One Year In, EPA Chemical Rule Delay Allows Chemical Disasters to Continue

, Research Director, Center for Science and Democracy

While news this week suggests that EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt is a walking ethics disaster, he’s long been paving the way for actual disasters—chemical disasters that is. A report released today, A Disaster in the Making, by community, environmental, health, workers, and scientist groups, illuminates how Pruitt’s unnecessary delay of the Chemical Disaster Rule continues to harm Americans. Read more >

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Emergency workers entering a chemical plant.
Photo: North Carolina National Guard/CC BY-ND 2.0 (Flickr)

What Scott Pruitt Still Gets Wrong About Chemical Safety Post-Hurricane Harvey

, Former Washington representative, Center for Science and Democracy

In a recent interview with ABC’s “Powerhouse Politics” podcast, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt was asked about the agency’s role in responding to Hurricanes Irma and Harvey and the devastation caused in Florida and Texas by the natural disasters. During the conversation, one of the hosts asked Administrator Pruitt about the EPA’s Risk Management Plan (RMP) rule and his decision to delay implementation of the amendments to modernize the standards for chemical facility safety (relevant because a chemical plant covered by this rule exploded after Hurricane Harvey hit Houston). Read more >

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The Arkema chemical facility in Crosby, Texas. Google Maps image.

As Arkema Plant Burns, Six Things We Know About Petrochemical Risks in the Wake of Harvey

, Research Director, Center for Science and Democracy

As Harvey continues to wreak havoc in the Southeast, one issue is starting to emerge as a growing threat to public health and safety: Houston’s vast oil, gas, and chemical production landscape. We’ve already seen accidental releases of chemicals at facilities owned by ExxonMobil, Chevron, and others. Now we are seeing explosions at Arkema’s Crosby facility 20 miles northeast of Houston, due to power failures and flooding. And there remains a threat of additional explosions. Read more >

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