Archive for December, 2022

Meet NJ’s Toxic Top Twenty Corporate Polluters

December 30th, 2022 No comments

They Still Don’t Have An App For That

No Biggie: It’s Only 1.6 BILLION Pounds Of Toxic Chemicals

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BTW, what ever happened to that Senate bill (see S2739) that was supposed to close the major loopholes exposed by the Passaic City chemical fire?

The above list of corporate toxic polluters is from 2001 data from a DEP 2004 Report – you can find it in Rutgers archives or the State Library, see;

Our friends Dupont and BASF, among many others, are exposed in that REPORT.

DEP doesn’t publish that Report – and many others – anymore, a huge problem I explained in detail in this post last year, see:

DEP claims that their website “DataMiner” software and the NJ Open Public Records Act (OPRA) law provide that same data to the public – but I challenge anyone to update the above 2001 data using DataMiner and OPRA – I guarantee that it will require expertise and take a very long time, and it is very unlikely that it can even be done, and certainly not by an average citizen. If you file an OPRA for this data, DEP will deny it and claim that they are not required by OPRA to “conduct research”. Similarly, in order to use DataMiner, you need to know what you’re looking for – a classic catch-22, because you can’t know what you’re looking for!

And even if it could be done, it is DEP’s job to do that. But, they now work for the polluters, not the public.

The Foundations stopped funding that work, so the environmental groups stopped doing it as well.

For decades before their current corporate and Foundation co-optation and absorption by the Green Mafia, Trenton based groups like NJ PIRG (now Environment NJ), NJ Environmental Federation (now Clean Water Action) and Sierra Club, would issue their own Annual Reports based on the DEP Report data and hold a State House press conference blasting the corporate polluters and demanding that DEP ratchet down on them.

The NJ Press Corps would all write stories, tailored to polluters in the region of their readership.

The obvious objectives of this exercise by DEP, environmental groups, and the media were to hold corporate polluters and DEP accountable and to educate the public about serious environmental problems and document DEP’s efforts to regulate polluters and protect public health and the environment.

But the corporate polluters strongly opposed all that – for obvious reasons – and they have used political power to stop DEP from issuing those Reports.

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I recently wrote about the implications of these DEP Reports, in terms of how DEP actually uses the data in them, see:

Despite these Reports being mandated by NJ environmental laws, the NJ Legislature – beholden to the same corporate polluters that have captured DEP –  has not objected and forced DEP to issue those Reports.

As a result, the public is ill informed about serious threats to their health and environment. Hence, corporate polluters, captured DEP, and bought politicians all get a pass.

But we have not surrendered to the manipulation of Foundation money, to corporate pressure, to the co-optation and gaslighting by DEP, or to the phagocytosis of the Green Mafia, and we continue to do corporate accountability/DEP regulatory work and warn the public, e.g., see:

Now, the only time environmental groups and the media even mention these DEP chemical regulatory programs is when they opportunistically get involved when a toxic train derails and forces evacuation of a City (Paulsboro), a chemical plant explodes (Knapp Technologies, Lodi), or there is a massive fire, like the recent near catastrophe in Passaic City.

BTW, what ever happened to that Senate bill (see S2739) that was supposed to fix the major loopholes exposed by the Passaic City chemical fire?

Just as we predicted, it went to Senator Sarlo’s Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee to die, see:

Someone should ask Senator Smith about that – and maybe shame NJ’s Green Mafia while they’re at it.

Happy New Year! 2023 should be a hoot.


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Murphy DEP Commissioner Urged To Withdraw Sweetheart Settlement With BASF At Toms River Ciba Geigy Superfund Site

December 28th, 2022 No comments

Time To Heal The Wounds, Not Rub Salt In Them

Time To Hold Corporate Polluters Accountable, Not Cut Dirty Deals With Them

Clearly, in good conscience, you must withdraw the draft settlement and go back to square one. This deal clearly is not in the public interest and it clearly fails to recover even a fraction of the NR injuries to hold corporate polluters accountable.

As expected – but much slower than it should be due to corrupt environmental group support – as the facts come to light and penetrate DEP spin and lies, strong public opposition and media coverage of the Murphy DEP’s sweetheart deal with corporate chemical giant BASF are beginning to emerge.

(Hometown Toms River was blindsided by the DEP deal and is strongly opposed.)

Politco has a killer story today, which will spark additional outrage, read the whole thing (subscription):

Politico reports the DEP’s failure to properly conduct a NRD economic valuation, a fatal failure I’ve emphasized.

Unfortunately, the Politico story did not mention the DEP failure to adopt NRD regulations (hit this link and see letter below for background on that, including Court cases), or the failure of Senator Smith’s NRD Legislative Task Force. Once again, we called it, see:

To try to cover their asses for signing off on a really bad deal, DEP is now flat out lying.

DEP is actually claiming that the Constitutional Amendment approved by the voters – which was clearly intended to stop Governors and Legislators from diverting NRD settlement money to the General Fund – was intended to discourage DEP recovery of economic damages.

(DEP’s Hajna must really think we’re stupid – DEP/AG just settled a paltry $9.5 million NRD deal with ExxonMobil – and they used a hired gun private law firm who was paid an undisclosed portion of that money to do so).

That is a flat out lie and Tittel called them on it:

Hajna said the department now “generally seeks to restore or replace injured resources in the area of the site that caused the injury.” In 2017, voters approved the amendment that directed NRD money to be spent “in the immediate area” around where the pollution happened. This was meant to put an end to unrelated spending sprees using NRD money.

So DEP’s current interpretation might enrage environmental groups that supported the amendment.

Jeff Tittel, a longtime environmental activist, said the constitutional amendment was to keep officials from siphoning off settlement money for the general fund, not to justify no-cash deals. For instance, much of the Exxon settlement and much of a separate $355 million settlement for damage to the Passaic River ended up going to balance state budgets, not back to the environment.

“That is outrageous that the administration would be trying to hide behind an amendment that was designed to stop the administration from stealing NRD money for other purposes than the environment to balance the budget and other things — when they sold out the people of New Jersey with this deal,” Tittel said in an interview.

(we wrote about that Constitutional Amendment, see:

I’ve been holding off writing my own analysis of this dirty deal until my OPRA public document requests are finished.

But I did send Commissioner LaTourette a letter to demand he withdraw this dirty deal. I sent it to several NJ reporters and a few trusted friends, but it looks like Politico was the only outlet so far to write the story.

That story will get legs, I’m sure. Especially after people learn that LaTourette represented a corporate polluter (a Dow Chemical subsidiary) and won a DEP NRD case. See letter to DEP Commissioner LaTourette below. (We broke and was the only one writing about LaTourette and NRD, so Politico obviously got that scoop from us, directly or indirectly. So, it would be nice to get attribution and credit once in awhile.)

The public would be disturbed to know that LaTourette represented a major corporate chemical polluter and won an NRD court case against DEP, yet he has failed to fix the defects the Courts have found to reject DEP NRD lawsuits.

Supporting links to the court cases and documents are found here.

———- Original Message ———-

From: Bill WOLFE <>


Cc: senbsmith <>, sengreenstein <>,,,

Date: 12/23/2022 8:17 PM

Subject: BASF NRD draft Settlement – Ciba-Geigy site

Dear Commissioner LaTourette:

Please accept the following initial broad public comment on the subject draft NRD Settlement. I will begin by putting the recommendations cart before the analytical horse.

Based on the deficiencies and flaws in the draft settlement (which I will address in subsequent detailed comments), I strongly urge that the Department take the following steps – and the sooner the better, to stem mounting public animosity and as a remedial good faith measure:

1) withdraw the settlement and publicly acknowledge that mistakes were made;

2) conduct an economic valuation of the natural resource injuries caused by the release and discharge of hazardous substances at the site.

With the support of consultants, the DEP previously conducted such an analysis at the Exxon site (documenting $8.9 billion in damages). The Department issued scientific reports on “natural capital” and “ecosystem services” that can be updated and used as a framework. The DEP previously issued NRD program Guidance for valuation of groundwater injury, based on volume of groundwater impacted and the regional BPU regulated cost of water. For natural resource injuries, the DEP previously relied on Guidance based on the “Baseline Ecological Evaluation” required under DEP Site Remediation regulations.

If the Department and the Attorney General’s Office lack qualified expert staff to conduct a credible analysis, then the Department can hire legal, economic and ecological experts and incorporate the cost of their compensation in the terms of a new settlement agreement.

3) conduct a series of Stakeholder meetings with the people of Toms River and various interested publics regarding the overall objectives for preservation, recreational, and other uses of the site. A qualified professional landscape architecture and planning firm should guide these planning and design deliberations.

But instead of consulting and working with the community, the Department blindsided the Toms River community. This is unforgivable, especially given the deeply troubling and emotionally scarring history of this site.

4) Renegotiate the settlement based on the community’s preservation/reuse plan and the DEP’s economic valuation study.

NJ Courts repeatedly have rejected DEP NRD lawsuits on the grounds that DEP lacked promulgated regulations that provided scientifically valid standards and methodologies for economically valuing NRD damages.

You yourself successfully represented corporate clients and defeated DEP in the following NRD case:

The Department and AG’s Office entered into a judicially recognized Settlement that required DEP to promulgate NRD valuation rules, see:

  • New Jersey Society of Environmental & Economic Development (SEED) v. Campbell (N.J. Super. Law Div., Mercer County, 2004)

Yet, the Department has failed to adopt NRD valuation regulations.

The Department also – as evidenced by the Department’s recent response to my OPRA public records request – failed to conduct an economic valuation of NRD damages at the Ciba-Geigy site, and therefore has no reliable, scientifically valid, or legally defensible basis for negotiation and recovery of NRD damages.

The prior NJ court NRD precedents – compounded by the Department’s lack of Court mandated NRD regulations and a reliable economic estimate – are legally fatal to successful litigation and obviously are what have forced the Department to settle for such a paltry deal from the world’s largest chemical corporation who earns $100 billion in annul revenue and a huge massively contaminated 1,400 acre contaminated site (with off site contamination).

Clearly, in good conscience, you must withdraw the draft settlement and go back to square one. This deal clearly is not in the public interest and it clearly fails to recover even a fraction of the NR injuries to hold corporate polluters accountable.

Bill Wolfe

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NJ Senate Sponsors Urged To Issue Statement Of Legislative Intent To Clarify Key Provisions Of New Environmental Justice Law

December 28th, 2022 No comments

A Statement Can Enhance DEP’s Legal Hand In Likely Event Of Industry Challenge

Law’s Vague And Conflicting Standards Cry Out For Clarity

Clarity Will Help EJ Communities Hold DEP Accountable And Review Permits

The new environmental justice law is legally in effect (as of September 18, 2020), but can not be implemented until DEP adopts regulations.

The DEP proposed EJ regulations on June 6, 2022 and is likely to adopt some modified version of the proposal sometime in 2023 (DEP must adopt within one year of proposal, or else the proposal expires and dies).

I reviewed and found the DEP rule proposal fatally flawed, and therefore likely to be challenged by corporate polluters, see:

The EJ law itself is extremely vague and especially so with respect to key controversial provisions, which establish dramatically new policies that have no precedents in DEP regulation and for which the science is not settled.

Due to this lack of statutory clarity – as well as troubling conflicts with existing laws – there is a regulatory train wreck coming.

The Legislature should have enacted real policy and legislative standards, or at least have issued some kind of Statement of Intent upon passage of the law, and surely before DEP proposed regulations so as to guide that effort.

Given that DEP’s rules or any adverse permit decision based on those rules is very likely to be challenged legally (administratively before OAL and NJ Courts of law), the Statement of Legislative Intent can bolster DEP’s legal hand. Similarly, it can inform and empower communities and EJ activists to hold DEP accountable to the law.

I realize that this is a little late, but to accomplish that, here’s a letter I wrote to Senate Environment Committee Chair and sponsor Bob Smith and Senator Greenstein. I urge people to do the same:

Dear Senator Smith:

I am writing to request that you ask OLS for a legal opinion or for the issuance of a formal Statement of Legislative Intent regarding certain provisions of the recently enacted Environmental Justice law (citations omitted – hereafter Act), see:

The Act appears to conflict with pre-existing federal and State laws and DEP implementing regulations and to lack clarity, as suggested below.

Such a statement of legislative intent would serve to streamline and bolster DEP regulatory implementation; DEP permit review and enforcement; inform judicial review; and inform and empower citizens’ review and comment on permits that implement the Act.

Specifically, the Act conflicts with existing federal and State laws regarding the following important issues, including but not limited to:

I)  Renewal Of Existing Permits

Under various current federal and environmental laws, DEP has broad authority to deny renewal of permits upon finding of unacceptable risks or impacts to human health or the environment.

I will offer just one illustration, limited to clean air laws.

DEP may require that risk screening and/or risk assessment be conducted for certain major pollution sources or those that emit certain hazardous air pollutants. Should that risk assessment demonstrate unacceptable risks to or impacts upon human health or environment, the DEP has the authority to:

1. Deny the permit outright; or

2. mandate risk reduction measures, including implementation of pollution prevention, state of the art pollution controls, or engineering measures, like combusting conditions, increased stack height or setback requirements; or

3. Conduct on site or off-site mitigation.

The risk basis for these decisions (e.g. risk range or numeric risk standard); the scope of the risk assessment (e.g. consideration of multiple pollutants, multiple exposure pathways, and cumulative impacts) and the technical scope of risk reduction and mitigation measures (e.g. on site or off-site mitigation; pollution trading and offsets, mitigation/offset ratio’s, etc) are ambiguous in law, DEP regulation, science and current DEP practice.

In contrast, the Act may be interpreted to limit several DEP’s authority regarding renewable of existing permits.

The Act does not limit DEP’s authority to hold public hearings: (C.13:1D-160 Requirements for permit applicants):

“Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit the authority of the department to hold or require additional public hearings, as may be required by any other law, rule, or regulation.

But that Act does not preserve and in fact limits DEP’s authority to deny renewals.

The Act provides only the authority to impose conditions, not to deny the permit, see: 13:1D-160, where DEP “may”, but is not required to:

“apply conditions to a permit for the expansion of an existing facility, or the renewal of an existing facility’s major source permit, concerning the construction and operation of the facility to protect public health, upon a finding that approval of a permit or permit renewal, as proposed, would, together with other environmental or public health stressors affecting the overburdened community, cause or contribute to adverse cumulative environmental or public health stressors in the overburdened community that are higher than those borne by other communities within the State, county, or other geographic unit of analysis as determined by the department pursuant to rule, regulation, or guidance adopted or issued pursuant to section 5 of this act.

The Act clearly protects the permit applicants rights to operate pending DEP’ EJ permits decision, see:

“f. Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit the right of an applicant to continue facility operations during the process of permit renewal to the extent such right is conveyed by applicable law, rule, or regulation, including the application shield provisions of the rules and regulations adopted pursuant to the “Air Pollution Control Act (1954),” P.L.1954, c.212 (C.26:2C-1 et seq.).”

Was it the Legislature’s intent to eliminate DEP’s existing authority to deny renewable of existing permits

Was it the Legislature’s intent to narrow the scope of DEP’s existing authority regarding risk reduction and mitigation measures?

As I read the Act, it does that.

Was it the legislature’s intent to authorize a DEP pollutant trading or offset program?

II)  Permit standards for new facilities subject to the Act

The Act appears to limit or undermine DEP authority to deny new permits under pre-existing laws by providing a new exception for EJ permits:

“except that where the department determines that a new facility will serve a compelling public interest in the community where it is to be located, the department may grant a permit that imposes conditions on the construction and operation of the facility to protect public health.”

What happens when a compelling public interest is demonstrated but DEP’s permit standard are violated

Was it the Legislative intent to do that?

III)  Unacceptable Risks or impacts

The Act provides the following broad and vague narrative standard of unacceptable risk or impact. DEp is required to deny a permit upon:

“a finding that approval of a permit or permit renewal, as proposed, would, together with other environmental or public health stressors affecting the overburdened community, cause or contribute to adverse cumulative environmental or public health stressors in the overburdened community that are higher than those borne by other communities within the State, county, or other geographic unit of analysis”

In contrast, for air pollutants and drinking water, DEP regulations and NJ laws, include numeric individual excess lifetime cancer risk of one in a million, respectively. (citations omitted).

The Act is silent on these issues and instead adopts a vague narrative standard.

The Act and DEP regulations currently have no definitions of critical terms, including but not limited to “stressor”; “cause or contribute” and “higher than those borne”.

What is legislative intent in regard to the standard unacceptable risk to human health and the environment?

This would apply to new and existing sources.

IV)  Definition of Risk Reduction and Mitigation

DEP is authorized to impose “conditions” on permits. Because the Act does not define and is silent on these important risk reduction and mitigation issues, it could be construed to eliminate DEP authority for the permits covered by the Act.

What is legislative intent with respect to risk reduction and mitigation measures?

Does DEP have the authority to mandate risk reduction and mitigation both on and off site?

What are DEP’s limits in doing so? (e.g. can DEP mandated 10 – 1 pollutant mitigation ratio’s?)

V)  On-SIte versus Off Site application

See above points.

This issue (i.e the scope of application – on site or beyond the fence line) under the federal Clean Air Act recently was before the US Supreme Court in a challenge to the Obama EPA’s Clean Power Plan, so it is not hypothetical.

As these are legal issues subject to legislative intent, I did not address how DEP navigated these issues in their June 2022 proposed implementation regulations (citation omitted). Perhaps legislative oversight hearings on DEP’s rule proposal would inform those issues, see:

I appreciate your consideration of and timely and favorable response to this request.


Bill Wolfe

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NJ DEP Has Gone Backwards On Environmental Justice Over The Last 20 Years

December 27th, 2022 No comments

“Justice” Rhetoric And Slogans Have Masked Regulatory Policy And Practice

EJ Law Did Not Change Underlying DEP Standards That Allow Pollution Problems

Social Indicators Displace Environmental Science, Data, And Regulatory Enforcement

DEP No Longer Targets Polluters, They Target Communities

Dr. Bullard speaks at Drew University (2/24/10)

Dr. Bullard speaks at Drew University (2/24/10)

This post will show how DEP has gone backwards over the last 20 years on “environmental justice” issues.

Although the science and environmental justice advocates and movement long preceded it – and even the Whitman DEP had a precursor “environmental equity” initiative and the McGreevey DEP championed it – I’ll target the origin of the current version of the NJ DEP’s environmental justice initiative to the Corzine DEP’s December 2009 release of a Report with data that proved it, see:

Since then, the rhetoric and political commitments to environmental justice have proliferated greatly, but the actual DEP legal, scientific, regulatory standards and permitting and enforcement practices have remained pretty much the same, while the actual underlying pollution and risk conditions and public health and environmental problems have gotten worse.

(pick your indictor to measure “progress”: ozone, particulates, hazardous air pollutants, total emissions, extreme heat days, flooding risks, traffic, noise, hospital emergency room visits, morbidity/mortality statistics, cumulative exposures, fetal and maternal health, obesity, COVID, stressors, disproportionate impacts, et al (e.g. are the prisoners still being air-boarded at the Essex County jail? Are they still burning garbage in black neighborhoods?)

I’ve written many times about these flaws, prior to and particularly in light of flaws in the new environmental justice law. But those posts were policy wonk oriented, with insufficient concrete examples to support the policy points I made.

So I was grateful to come across a 2004 DEP Report on the data from the NJ Right To Know (RTK), Pollution Prevention, and Toxic Catastrophe Prevention Act (TCPA) programs that provides concrete examples (post on that Report forthcoming).

In the public release transmittal letter for that Report, then DEP Commission Brad Campbell made my points very clear about how DEP regulatory programs and data can be applied to promote real environmental justice and result in real substantive improvements in environmental conditions. Campbell wrote:

Preparing this report, and more importantly using this information, is part of a broader strategy at the DEP to use information wisely and target our resources to focus on the most pressing problems in the state.

For example, in 2002, DEP’s enforcement office targeted a facility in Newark because it was the state’s largest emitter of hydrazine, a carcinogenic air pollutant. The facility chose to shut down its operations later that same year. Additionally DEP targeted the top twenty-five facilities releasing toxic substances. One result was the investigation of all boat manufacturers that utilize styrene, another carcinogen. Based on these efforts the industry plans to reformulate to reduce the styrene emissions.

In 2003, partly driven by the top twenty-five list and in conjunction with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the DEP re-energized its refinery enforcement initiative. Through this project the DEP investigated and ultimately reached a settlement with the Coastal Eagle Point Oil Refinery. The settlement will result in significant reductions in volatile organic compound emissions from the facility, primarily benzene, which is also a toxic substance and carcinogen. Efforts are ongoing at three other New Jersey refineries and other facilities continue to be investigated as part of the analysis of the top twenty-five toxic emitting facilities.

Over the past two years, DEP has conducted two geographic enforcement sweeps in Camden and Paterson, urban areas of our state where residents were concerned about the impact of various industrial facilities on their children. These initiatives employed the use of information never before available to the DEP. New data was used to guide both the selection of these locations and the targeting of facilities and business sectors within these municipalities. As early projects to employ newly available data, they will serve as springboards to continuing improvement in the collection, management and application of data to direct the effective use of our resources.

That DEP effort clearly was not adequate, but it did produce results and it did improve the status quo. It was far more than rhetoric. And it targeted corporate polluters.

And the DEP made commitments to stronger future reforms, like strengthening regulatory standards, which is evidenced by the use of the term “springboards to continuing improvement”.

Compare that DEP 2004 EJ effort – which resulted in enforcement and actual reduction in emissions of toxic air pollutants and risks to EJ communities – to the current DEP EJ program and EJ law.

Instead of using environmental data, science, and regulation to target locations and pollutersprioritize and focus DEP resources, support enforcement of laws and regulations, and actually force corporate polluters to reduce toxic emissions, the DEP now targets EJ communities based on social indicators: race, language and income.

DEP does not target specific corporate polluters or the use of specific enforceable regulatory tools.

Instead, DEP now targets broad geographic areas, based on social indicators. This masks the nature of the problem and the chemical fingerprints of the polluter and thus lets polluters off the hook (see hydrazine and refinery examples above).

DEP does not focus resources and priorities on actual pollution and risks and data and science, instead they use surrogate social indicators.

DEP’s use of surrogate indicators completely undermines any real effort to enforce pollution reductions on corporate polluters, because enforcement of environmental laws and DEP regulations require data and scientific support. Corporate polluters have lawyers and legal rights to appeal anything DEP does. And the Courts make sure that DEP decisions are supported by data and science and comply with laws and regulatory standards.

DEP no longer focuses on regulations and enforcement. They issue press releases. The Gov. issues Executive Orders that read like press releases. And they hold events with EJ community activists.

These are all symbolic performative gestures that have no impact at all on environmental conditions.

Worse, they are used to mask reality in terms of: 1) actual data on ambient environmental conditions and health risks; 2) on the location, corporate name, and type and amount of corporate pollution; and 3) what DEP is doing to collect data and enforce environmental laws and regulations. This lets polluters and DEP off the hook and betrays EJ communities.

Finally, the entire issue of “springboards to continuing improvement”, such as stricter future standards is now off the table.

It is off the table for 2 primary reasons: 1) the rhetoric and slogans mask the issues, so very few people are aware of them or pressing DEP for real reforms; and 2) because the new EJ law pretends to provide new standards and regulatory authority to DEP, while actually doing the opposite.

The EJ law does the opposite for 3 primary reasons:

1) the law makes no changes to the current standards DEP enforces or the underlying basis of how they actually make permit decisions. Instead it grafts an entirely new “environmental justice impact statement” and public and DEP review process on the seriously flawed existing DEP regulatory standards and permit programs that have allowed the current conditions to be created by corporate polluters.

2) the law is very narrow in scope, e.g. it applies to a small set of polluters, pollution sources, and public health risks; and to a small set of what DEP actually does (e.g. the law does not: a) mandate that DEP update and base air pollution standards, risk assessments, public heath risk standards, and permit reviews on “cumulative risks”; b) it does not require that DEP target resources or enforcement efforts on specific polluters or provide a basis for enforcement or pollution reductions; and c) mandate that DEP update air monitoring (locations or pollutants), air quality standards, or “state of the art” pollution controls to reflect cumulative risks or environmental justice impacts.

3) it is riddled with loopholes that allow current polluters to continue status quo pollution (the EJ law prohibits DEP from denying renewal of permits – all DEP can do is require some form of unspecified impact mitigation. This allows existing polluters – who are creating the existing pollution that creates unacceptable disproportionate impacts and risks – to continue to pollute and actually weakens existing law, where DEP had authority to deny permits based on unacceptable impacts or risks. ). The new EJ law also allows DEP to issue permits for new pollution sources, based on economic considerations.

Over the last 20 years, actual environmental conditions, public health risks, and public health outcomes have all deteriorated.

The DEP has not ratcheted down on any environmental standard or strengthen any permit reviews.

There is no longer any activist or media focus on or DEP commitment to “springboards to continuing improvement”.

Yet, because of rhetoric and a fatally flawed environmental justice law, the media, activist, larger public, and EJ communities think DEP is making progress. In spite of the facts, absurdly they praise the Gov. and DEP (instead of demanding more and holding the Gov., DEP and corporate polluters accountable).

That makes current conditions far worse than 20 years ago, when Brad Campbell’s DEP wrote that 2004 RTK and TCPA Report.

[End Note: Just to be clear, I am not arguing that the law and DEP should not consider social justice indicators. The whole point of disproportionate impact is to consider those realties. What I am saying is that social and geographic focus must not provide cover for or completely displace data, science and regulatory programs. The geography, justice and science must be integrated and used to enforce environmental laws and standards. That is not happening right now. And the EJ law may have intended to do that, but it does not and it is not doing that.

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A Good Year

December 25th, 2022 No comments

For Cactus

Last year’s photos were better.


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