EPA Rollback Of Chemical Safety Reforms Troubles Houston Fire Chief

June 29, 2018
Changes to the rules proposed after the West, Texas fertilizer plant explosion will make it harder for the department to respond to similar incidents.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s effort to roll back chemical safety reforms proposed by the Obama administration after the deadly West, Texas fertilizer explosion aren’t sitting well with Houston Fire Department Chief Samuel Peña, according to an article from Houston Public Media. Tougher Obama-era rules following the 2013 explosion would have required companies to be more transparent about how chemicals are stored. however, the EPA under Administrator Scott Pruitt delayed the changes until 2019. 

The EPA went a step further in May and released a new version of the rules that eliminates some of the transparency requirements, according to the article. Peña says that communities near chemical facilities have the “right to know” about potential hazards and that the new EPA proposal will make it harder for his department to respond to emergency incidents. 

Read the entire article here

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