We know that Oregon has high levels of naturally occurring arsenic. We also know that it is emitted by polluters: metal processing specifically contributes over 60% of the human-caused arsenic emissions according to DEQ source material for the Portland Air Toxics Solutions; it also comes from agricultural pesticides and soil dust, as well as combusted fuel from vehicles. We know it is classified as a KNOWN (Class A) human carcinogen. We know that arsenic is one of 15 air toxicants that the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality identified as being up to 10x over health-based benchmarks in the Portland Metro air shed. What we don’t know: How is this affecting my child? Are our children safe?
Posts Categorized: transparency
Every day driving my daughters to school I pass eastbound over the Fremont Bridge. During many of these days as we are just about to exit onto Kerby, we have to pass through a dense dark gray “fog” created by the air emissions of a regulated polluter just below the bridge. Some days the fog… Read more »
Air pollution problems are inherently local, the worst of them manifesting in “Toxic Hot Spots.” Yet this is specifically the area where the Clean Air Act and the state regulatory framework has failed to protect citizens. If direct citizen negotiation is still considered the most effective means of addressing local toxic hot spots, citizens need stronger public advocates to work on their behalf. Portland should look to the spirit of what the Houston Mayor did, which was to say, the city is the best entity to look out for the equitable protection of all its citizens and should be creative in its ideas of how to engage on the issue.
The Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has often taken the chance to sing the praises of citizens who are actively engaged in the effort to advocate for cleaner air. Just this past week, the NW Examiner’s April edition came out with a letter from Andy Ginsburg praising Paul Koberstein’s interest in air quality and the… Read more »