Today, Adrian Garcia, former Sheriff and candidate for County Commissioner, Precinct 2, issued the following statement on the request by Valero to increase toxic emissions at its local refinery:
“Last night, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TECQ) and Valero, which operates the Valero Refinery in the Manchester area, held a public meeting about Valero’s request, which has already received preliminary approval by the TCEQ to emit toxic air pollution without adequate safeguards for the health and safety of our residents.”
“With the level of cancer clusters already identified in the area, this is not the time to allow Valero to drastically increase the amount of highly toxic hydrogen cyanide it releases. Valero is specifically asking TCEQ for permission to emit up to 512 tons per year of hydrogen cyanide and remove requirements to document benzene reductions.”
“TCEQ’s acceptance and justification to endanger local communities and fence-line neighborhoods is not acceptable. I stand with local residents, activists and T.E.J.A.S. who are demonstrating total opposition to permitting the release of ten times more toxic hydrogen cyanide.”
It is appalling that our current county commissioner is absent and unwilling to protect the residents of east Harris County from toxic hydrogen cyanide. We need county leaders who will stand up to polluters to strengthen prevention to avoid toxic releases of hydrogen cyanide, benzene, and other dangerous chemicals – not stand by and allow more emissions.
“Only by acting together can we stop our children and families from continuing to be put in danger because of a lack of concern for the health and well being of our community.”
For information about Adrian Garcia and his campaign for Harris County Commissioner, Precinct 2, visit www.AdrianGarcia.com, https://www.facebook.com/Adria