"California Suspends Operations at Vernon Battery Recycler"

"Toxics regulators say Exide Technologies has been releasing hazardous waste into the soil beneath its plant because of a degraded pipeline."

"State regulators took the highly unusual step Wednesday of suspending operations at a Vernon battery recycler that has discharged harmful quantities of lead for years and more recently has been deemed to pose a danger to as many as 110,000 people because of arsenic emissions.

The state Department of Toxic Substances Control said its order came after officials learned this spring that Exide Technologies, one of the largest car battery recyclers in the world, had been continuously releasing hazardous waste into the soil beneath its plant because of a degraded pipeline.

The temporary shutdown follows several Los Angeles Times stories about arsenic emissions from the plant, which air quality officials said pose an increased cancer risk to as many as 110,000 people living in Boyle Heights, Maywood and Huntington Park. The South Coast Air Quality Management District said the plant posed a higher cancer risk to more people than any of 450 operations the agency has regulated in the last 25 years."

Jessica Garrison and Kim Christensen report for the Los Angeles Times April 24, 2013.

Source: LA Times, 04/25/2013