PNS National Newscast

Audio Activation
"Siri, play the Public News Service (podcast)"
"Hey Google, play the Public News Service podcast"
"Alexa, play Public News Service podcast"
or "Alexa, what's my news flash?" once you set it up in the Alexa app

2020Talks

Audio Activation
"Siri, play the 2020Talks podcast"
"Hey Google, play the 2020Talks podcast"
"Alexa, play Two-Thousand-Twenty Talks podcast"
or "Alexa, what's my news flash?" once you set it up in the Alexa app

Newscasts

PNS Daily Newscast - January 27, 2021 


Biden executive orders address pollution and environmental justice; health professionals note a link between climate change and human health.


2021Talks - January 27 , 2021 


The Senate moves forward with Trump's impeachment trial; scholars question the legality of impeachment after an official is out of office.

WV Lawmakers Stall Toxic Water-Pollution Update at Industry Request

Downloading Audio

Click to download

We love that you want to share our Audio! And it is helpful for us to know where it is going.
Media outlets that are interested in downloading content should go to www.newsservice.org
Click Here if you do not already have an account and need to sign up.
Please do it now, as the option to download our audio packages is ending soon

Five years after the Elk River chemical spill prompted public protests, a West Virginia legislative committee has stalled a major update of health and safety related water-pollution rules. (Dan Heyman)
Five years after the Elk River chemical spill prompted public protests, a West Virginia legislative committee has stalled a major update of health and safety related water-pollution rules. (Dan Heyman)
January 7, 2019

CHARLESTON, W.Va. — At industry request, a legislative rule-making committee has stalled new limits to nearly 100 toxic water pollutants, as state lawmakers prepare to update regulations.

Three years ago, federal agency experts handed down new recommendations for limiting toxins in state surface waters under the Clean Water Act. Since then, the state Department of Environmental Protection has worked to implement them.

But Angie Rosser, executive director of the West Virginia Rivers Coalition, said at the last minute, the West Virginia Manufacturers Association asked lawmakers to throw out the changes and keep rules based on research more than 30 years old.

"It's past time to update these, but that was undone in a single vote,” Rosser said. “Now, we're still back to science that protects our health, that protects our drinking water, conducted prior to 1985."

During the committee hearing, the manufacturers' association said it needed more time to study the three-year-old federal recommendations, but offered no argument against any specific proposal.

In 2014, a tank at Freedom Industries leaked chemicals into the Elk River, contaminating the drinking-water system used by a large segment of the state. Rosser said hospitals treated hundreds of people after that spill. She said she’s astonished to see lawmakers dismissing potentially serious drinking-water contamination issues.

"West Virginians know very well chemicals that shouldn't be in our drinking water make us sick, they shut down businesses,” she said. “It's mystifying to me why this legislative committee would not provide the best protections to the water we drink."

The work of the rule-making committee is a regular part of preparations ahead of the legislative session starting this week. Rosser said she hopes people can convince lawmakers to reinstate the updated water-pollution limits for health and safety when DEP rule-making comes up during the session.

Dan Heyman, Public News Service - WV