"Your Tax Dollars May Be Funding The Expansion Of The Plastics Industry"

"Plastic manufacturers have received $9 billion in subsidies for new or bigger facilities since 2012."

"With demand for fossil fuels expected to decline as the world shifts toward electric vehicles and renewable energy, Big Oil is in the midst of an enormous pivot to plastic production. And taxpayers are helping them.

Petrochemical companies like Shell and Exxon Mobil have received nearly $9 billion in state and local tax breaks since 2012 to build or expand 50 plastics manufacturing facilities, according to a report the Environmental Integrity Project, or EIP, released today. Much of that activity occurred along the Gulf Coast of Texas and Louisiana, often alongside marginalized communities. What’s more, 84 percent of the operations released more air pollutants than allowed during the past three years, despite their promises to protect public health and the environment, the nonprofit found.  

“Taxpayer subsidies are helping to fund dangerous and often illegal air pollution in communities of color,” Alexandra Shaykevich, EIP’s research manager and a co-author of the report, told Grist. She said the manufacturers should be held accountable for their environmental impact and those public funds redirected to beneficial projects like improving public schools. “If a company is breaking the law” she added, “it shouldn’t get taxpayer money.”"

Joseph Winters reports for Grist March 14, 2024.


"Billions in Taxpayer Subsidies to U.S. Plastics Plants Support Illegal Air Pollution in Communities of Color" (Environmental Integrity Project release with link to report)

Source: Grist, 03/18/2024