Environment
1:37 pm
Fri April 27, 2012

Rally for Safer Chemical Legislation Planned for Tomorrow

Residents and community activists are planning an event tomorrow in west Louisville to raise awareness about toxic chemicals.

It’s not an accident that the rally is planned on the edge of Rubbertown—where many of the city’s chemical plants are located. Jason Howard of the Kentucky Environmental Foundation says the point of the rally is to support an overhaul of the Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976.

“It is outdated and has really allowed for hazardous chemicals to be used in products we use every day, in makeup in cleaning supplies and things like that,” he said.

A bill has been introduced in Congress to update the measure. The Safe Chemicals Act would require companies to provide information about the safety of their chemicals in order for their product to remain on the market. It would also require the Environmental Protection Agency to reduce exposure to some of the most dangerous substances—like lead, mercury and other toxic compounds.

And Howard says the legislation could also more directly affect Rubbertown.

“The legislation would also require the EPA to identify communities that have been adversely impacted by the production of toxic chemicals, so Rubbertown, obviously,” he said.

The Safe Chemicals Act has been introduced in the Senate and is awaiting a committee hearing. The bill is expected to come before the full Senate sometime this summer, and supporters are asking Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to give the legislation a fair hearing.

The rally will be at Russell Lee Park tomorrow at 2pm.