West-Virginia-Chemical-Spill

I don’t know how many people on tumblr actually live in WV, but even if you don’t, could you please look at this and sign it? It needs 95,000 more signatures by February 20th.

This is really being overlooked, and it’s quite depressing, to be perfectly honest. I live in WV, so I really want to see something done about this.
If everyone could take a look at this and sign it, I would really, really appreciate it. And if you could possibly reblog it, to spread the word around, then it might actually be able to get enough signatures in time!

Please help me out with this. It’s only got 3,000 signatures so far. There are way more than enough people on this site to get this to reach its goal in no time. And it doesn’t even cost anything but a moment of your time, so you really have absolutely nothing to lose. Please, I’d love it so much if everyone could help.

Industry does everything they can and gets away with it almost all the time, whether it’s the coal industry, … or water or whatever. They will cut corners, and they will get away with it.
— 

Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-West Virginia

Senator Rockefeller’s quote can be read here in the Daily Kos, in the context of other statements he made about the chemical spill in his State of West Virginia.

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Living in Doubt: West Virginians Seek Safe Water After Elk River Chemical Spill

More than two months after Freedom Industries spilled 10,000 gallons of toxic 4-methylcyclohexane methanol and an unknown amount of a polyglycol ether into the Elk River in West Virginia, many residents rely on volunteer efforts for safe drinking water.

On January 9, 2014, nearly 300,000 residents from nine counties in the vicinity of Charleston were left without drinking water after the spill occurred just upstream from the main West Virginia American Water municipal intake and treatment center. Two months later, residents and some businesses continue to use bottled water for drinking and cooking because they do not trust that tap water is safe.

In light of what many see as an inadequate response from the state in getting residents clean, safe water, the WV Clean Water Hub was established. They have so far been able to do what the state has failed to - make home deliveries of free water to elderly, disabled and other residents who cannot get out to pick it up themselves.

By James Fassinger, Truthout | Photo Essay

12 Days After West Virginia Chemical Spill, Company Admits to Second Chemical

Almost two weeks after a storage tank was discovered to be leaking 7,500 gallons of the coal-washing chemical Crude MCHM into the Elk River/water supply for nine counties in West Virginia, company officials finally disclosed yesterday that 300 gallons of another chemical, “PPH, stripped,” was also part of the brew.

Days after the spill, residents were finally told that the system had been flushed out and the water was safe to drink, but a subsequent increase in chemical-related symptoms strongly suggests that dangerous levels of Crude MCHM—or perhaps something else—were still present …

SEE MORE:

http://ecowatch.com/2014/01/22/after-west-virginia-spill-company-admits-second-chemical/

Warning To My Followers Who Live In West Virginia

Do not drink the tap water. Hopefully by now you have heard that a chemical has spilled into the river that is the main source for water there. It is so bad that officials are saying to not take a bath/shower in the water. Only use it for putting out fires and in toilets. Please stay safe and stock upon bottle water.

Link to more information

Need bottled water? If you live in certain parts of West Virginia, you probably won’t be able to find any at your local store. A chemical spill has made tap water unusable for approximately 300,000 West Virginia residents. And the spill affects you, too, regardless of where you live.

Here are 6 Good Reasons to Worry About the West Virginia Chemical Spill

To hell with every greedhead operator who flocked here throughout history because you wanted what we had, but wanted us to go underground and get it for you. To hell with you for offering above-average wages in a place filled with workers who’d never had a decent shot at employment or education, and then treating the people you found here like just another material resource – suitable for exploiting and using up, and discarding when they’d outlived their usefulness. To hell with you for rigging the game so that those wages were paid in currency that was worthless everywhere but at the company store, so that all you did was let the workers hold it for a while, before they went into debt they couldn’t get out of.

To hell with you all for continuing, as coal became chemical, to exploit the lax, poorly-enforced safety regulations here, so that you could do your business in the cheapest manner possible by shortcutting the health and quality of life not only of your workers, but of everybody who lives here. To hell with every operator who ever referred to West Virginians as “our neighbors.”

To hell with every single screwjob elected official and politico under whose watch it all went on, who helped write those lax regulations and then turned away when even those weren’t followed. To hell with you all, who were supposed to be stewards of the public interest, and who sold us out for money, for political power. To hell with every one of you who decided that making life convenient for business meant making life dangerous for us. To hell with you for making us the eggs you had to break in order to make breakfast.

To hell with everyone who ever asked me how I could stand to live in a place like this, so dirty and unhealthy and uneducated. To hell with everyone who ever asked me why people don’t just leave, don’t just quit (and go to one of the other thousand jobs I suppose you imagine are widely available here), like it never occurred to us, like if only we dumb hilljacks would listen as you explained the safety hazards, we’d all suddenly recognize something that hadn’t been on our radar until now.

Emergency room visits had nearly tripled.

Man-made disasters on the environment not only pollute our planet, they also poison our people. West Virginia residents are being admitted to hospitals at alarming numbers after state officials had given the clear to start drinking the water again. I can’t imagine how water can be safe to drink only days after 7,500 gallons of crude MCHM - a chemical used to wash coal - was spilled into the local river. I would never drink that water, not even weeks after the spill. State officials may be rushing to say it’s safe to mitigate the damage of the spill, but they are making things worse by telling people it’s alright to drink contaminated water. Corporations like Freedom Industries and oil typhoon BP are killing our planet, killing our animals, and killing our people. Why do they always get off so easy???

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Best (and Worst) Response to the WV Chemical Spill


The site of a West Virginia chemical spill that contaminated the water supply for 300,000 people operated largely outside government oversight, highlighting gaps in regulations and prompting questions on whether local communities have a firm grasp on potential threats to drinking water. The storage facility owned by Freedom Industries Inc. on the banks of the Elk River was subject to almost no state and local monitoring, interviews and records show. The industrial chemical that leaked into the river, 4-methylcyclohexane methanol, isn’t closely tracked by federal programs…“.* What was the response from Republican Speaker Of The House John Boehner? The Young Turks host Cenk Uygur breaks it down.

*Read more here from ALEXANDRA BERZON and KRIS MAHER:http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/S…

Environmental Crises and Governmental Transparency (or the Lack Thereof)

According to an article posted by Huff Post Green (Huffington Post), The Society of Environmental Journalists and the Society of Professional Journalists sent a harshly-worded letter to the heads of the Environmental Protection Agency and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Tuesday (January 21, 2014), criticizing what they call a “lack of openness” from government officials about the cause of the spill and ongoing cleanup efforts.

Extracts from the letter:

“The recent drinking-water contamination incident represents a major crisis for 300,000 people living in the Charleston, W.Va. area, but it’s also a wake-up call to people across the United States who rely on their public servants to ensure their health and safety.  The lack of openness during this crisis by government officials and agencies has aggravated an alarming situation and left many people doubting the competence and credibility of the people in whom their welfare is entrusted.

"During crises like these, it is the job of the news media to seek reliable answers for the public and hold government agencies accountable. It is a time when the government agencies responsible for health and safety need to be active, open, transparent, and available to answer public and news media questions. From the beginning of the West Virginia emergency, government agencies seemed to be evading the news media, and by extension the public.

"In crises like these, it’s imperative for government and those entrusted with the public’s welfare to inform people promptly and continually about what they know — and what they don’t. Too often, in the interest of preventing panic or confusion, government agencies clamp down on their communication with the news media and the public.  As happened in this case, a parsimonious public-affairs strategy all too often backfires, feeding people’s fear and distrust of government.”

Attorneys Note West Virginia Train Accident

West Virginia train accident attorneys note the derailment of train carrying North Dakota crude oil in Fayette County, West Virginia on Monday, February 16, causing explosions, flames over 300 feet high and contamination of a river. According to a story filed by MetroNews of West Virginia:

“At least one house was destroyed, but police have found no evidence of fatalities. CSX [the owner of the train] said one person was treated for potential inhalation (of fumes).

In a statement Monday evening CSX said its teams “are working with first responders to address the fire, to determine how many rail cars derailed and to deploy environmental protective and monitoring measures on land, air and in the nearby Kanawha River.

An undetermined number of cars of the CSX train, believed to be 12-15, jumped the tracks at about 1:20 p.m.”

MetroNews of West Virginia

Other news sources report that approximately 1,000 people were evacuated as a result of the derailment and subsequent oil spill.  West Virginia governor Earl Ray Tomblin declared a state of emergency for Fayette and Kanawha Counties. West Virginia American Water was forced to close intake at a water treatment facility due to oil spilling into the Kanawha River.

West Virginia train accident attorneys note that this accident occurred just over a year after a chemical spill into the Elk River near Charleston raised water contamination concerns and prompted the governor to declare states of emergency in eight West Virginia counties, including Kanawha County which has also been impacted by the train accident spill.

When West Virginia train accidents cause contamination of land or water, property damage, or personal injury, train accident attorneys can assist affected individuals in recovering compensation for their losses. Damages caused by train accidents can include damage to property that must be repaired, loss of property value, medical expenses related to illness from poisoned water or air, and damages for pain and suffering and inconvenience.

If you have been affected by the West Virginia train accident and oil spill, contact the American Injury Attorney Group for a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your options. We can connect you with an affiliated West Virginia train accident attorney who can assist you in pursuing a claim for compensation.

New Post https://attorney-group.com/blog/attorneys-note-west-virginia-train-accident/

Does anyone know of a thorough source to keep up with the West Virginia chemic spill? I have family there, but they were fortunate enough to leave Charleston to stay with other family members an hour away. Last I heard (on Friday), the water basically looked like motor oil. But to be honest, I don’t know how involved my family will be in terms of legal consequences, etc., which is why I’d like to find some better news sources (also besides the repetitive mainstream articles I can easily Google).

For one, I can’t find much in terms of the chemical’s effect on the environment. I keep reading that the chemical should’ve evaporated relatively quickly, but what about the plants and animals that were exposed before that happened? Were any endangered species affected? If so, should their numbers be monitored as quickly as possible? Will there be any traces of it left in the soil or water? Are there any long-term effects of being exposed to the chemical?

Another thing I was curious about was that they closed businesses/schools/etc.: Would people be compensated in any way (I’m thinking more of the low-income people who really can’t afford to miss a few days of work)? What about Charleston’s homeless population - how were they affected, and will they benefit from any of the lawsuits?

Will we learn to take care of our infrastructure (and this means discerning where we should be putting tax dollars)? Will we begin to hold corporations responsible for their selfish actions? When can we start to learn from our mistakes?

The West Virginia chemical spill has impacted nine counties and completely shut down offices and business in the central region of the state, including in the capitol of Charleston. The contaminated water is too dangerous for residents to drink and to use even for bathing, laundry or hand washing. Governor Earl Ray Tomblin declared a state of emergency on Thursday after the spill from Freedom Industries affected a river and a nearby water treatment plant. The entire area has now been deemed a national disaster area. Upwards of 200,000 people are impacted. The water was contaminated by an agent that is commonly used in the coal mining process. The chemical agent reportedly overran a containment area and flowed into the river, sparking immediate panic among both residents and environmental officials. (via West Virginians Told: Don’t Drink Or Touch The Water | Off The Grid News)