STATES SUE EPA OVER DATA ON PLANTS' TOXIC THREAT TO COMMUNITIES

December 12, 2007

Twelve states sued EPA Oct. 28, 2007, over the agency's cutbacks in data available to communities about the toxic threats presented to them by nearby industrial plants.

EPA's changes to the Toxics Release Inventory, a program all sides agree has reduced toxic risks by information rather than regulation, have already met with major opposition from community and environmental groups and Congress. Many of the changes were dictated to EPA by the White House Office of Management and Budget at the urging of business lobbyists.

States use TRI information to protect their citizens in a variety of regulatory programs. States suing EPA include California, New York, Arizona, Connecticut, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Vermont.

SEJ has opposed the EPA TRI changes, because TRI is a major tool used by environmental journalists in informing people about toxic risks.