Published: Fri, April 21, 2017
Science | By Hubert Green

Chicago EPA office denies rumors of closing

Chicago EPA office denies rumors of closing

In East Chicago, about 1,200 mostly low-income black and Latino residents of the complex are being forced to move out because of high levels of lead that were found in the soil and drinking water.

But superfund site resident Maritza Lopez welcomed Pruitt's visit.

During a news briefing in East Chicago, where he was flanked by several officials, including Indiana Gov. Eric Holcomb (R) and East Chicago Mayor Anthony Copeland (D), Pruitt emphasized that local, state and federal officials are coming to together to address the contamination issue in the city.

Demonstrators rallied in the lead-contaminated community to protest Pruitt's visit.

Pruitt, has reportedly faced criticism from receiving contributions from the fossil fuel industry and questioning climate change science.

Debbie Chizewer, a law fellow at Northwestern University's Environmental Advocacy Clinic, said the East Chicago residents she works with were excited about the high-profile visit, but still anxious that cleanup efforts already underway will not go far enough.

"Given our resource situation, we will continue a freeze on external hiring", Flynn noted, despite the fact that the presidential memorandum blocking any hiring of federal employees has been lifted.

The head of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) toured his first hazardous waste site on Tuesday amid proposed budget cuts that could devastate efforts to clean up contaminated land and water around the country.

Chanting crowds weaved through streets of East Chicago on Wednesday near a Superfund site.

Brooks, surrounded by members of the NAACP, the Twin City Ministerial Alliance, the East Chicago/Calumet Coalition Community Advisory Group and the Community Strategy Group, laid out a list of demands. Officials began evacuating the 45-year-old complex, built on a site previously occupied by a lead-products factory, after soil tests found some yards with lead levels over 70 times the US safety standard.

Forty-four-year-old Demetra Turner says finding a solution is the fight of her life.

According to the EPA release, which contained multiple statements from coal companies that will be benefiting from the new easements on environmental regulations, the "new direction" for the agency (a contradiction that employees and the public alike find confusing) will be focused on transferring responsibility for environmental to state and local partners.

Administrator Scott Pruitt will join IN leaders including Gov. Eric Holcomb IN East Chicago.

Pruitt has criticized the EPA for overreach and President Donald Trump's administration has taken steps to roll back environmental regulations.

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