The EPA's Risk Management Program (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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LadyDragonflyCC/Flickr

Fires in Texas Spark Interest in Chemical Safety

, Washington Representative

Watching the news last week as clouds of thick black smoke billowed over Houston, I worried about my family. They are surrounded by chemical plants. Hearing state and local officials saying there is no air quality issue, and then ordering everyone to “shelter in place” terrified me. In truth, the monitors either weren’t working or were under maintenance, and there didn’t seem to be an evacuation plan. Why not? The law requires one.

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Photo: LadyDragonflyCC/Flickr

The EPA’s Proposed Chemical Disaster Rule is a Disaster in the Making

, researcher, Center for Science & Democracy

UCS released a white paper today – The Impact of Chemical Facilities on Environmental Justice Communities: Review of Selected Communities Affected by Chemical Facility Incidents – that addresses the EPA’s proposed rule to reverse improvements to the Risk Management Program (RMP), a regulatory mechanism intended to ensure the safety and security of over 12,000 facilities that use or store hazardous chemicals nationwide, as made under the Obama administration and finalized in January 2017. Specifically, it highlights the potential health impacts of past catastrophic incidents at chemical facilities on nearby communities. Read more >

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Peter Wright’s 50+ Chemical Facility Conflicts: A Disaster Waiting to Happen

, Lead science and policy analyst

Peter Wright, President Donald Trump’s nominee to lead the EPA’s Office of Land and Emergency Management, will face the Senate Environment and Public Works committee at his nomination hearing this Wednesday. Mr. Wright has spent the majority of his career working as an attorney for Dow Chemical Company (now DowDuPont). Would he make a smooth transition from defender of polluters to defender of the public? Under Pruitt’s lead, it seems unlikely that public safety would be at the top of his agenda. Read more >

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The Chevron Richmond refinery fire, August 6, 2012. Photo: Greg Kunit/CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 (Flickr)

Contents Under Pressure: Speak Out Against EPA Proposed Chemical Facility Safety Rollbacks That Put Communities at Risk

, researcher, Center for Science & Democracy

Over the last year, we have written extensively on the actions that Scott Pruitt’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has taken to eliminate or weaken critical science-based protections, particularly on chemical facility safety. From the outset, Pruitt was determined to delay the implementation of updates to the Risk Management Plan(RMP) that called for the assessment of safer technologies, more accessible and quality information for communities near facilities, and improved emergency response coordination. Now with a new proposed rule, the saga continues as the EPA under Pruitt moves one step closer to eliminating hard-fought improvements to the RMP. Read more >

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