Jun 9, 2014
In Kettleman City, a farming community of 1,500 people in Central California, eleven babies were born with physical deformities between September 2007 and March 2010. Three of them died.
Do you think this unusually high rate of birth defects could be caused by the large toxic waste landfill located three miles from Kettleman? A landfill that has been fined by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency over and over during the past 30 years for hazardous waste violations?
Any government agency concerned about people’s health would have shut down this landfill a long time ago. But the EPA didn’t – and in fact it issued such ridiculously low fines that it actually encouraged Chemical Waste Management, Inc., the company that operates the landfill, to continue to poison the soil and groundwater around the facility.
State officials, too, turned a deaf ear to the complaints of Kettleman residents. They claimed “surveys were inconclusive,” and continued to allow the landfill to operate. AND, last week, state regulators gave the company a new 10-year permit, which allows for an expansion of the landfill’s capacity by five million cubic yards, or about 50 percent!
These officials, hand in hand with the capitalists they serve, might as well spoon-feed the poison to the people in Kettleman and other communities nearby!