Hearing Today in Federal Court in Salt Lake City, Utah
Tim Wagner 001 801 502 5450
Cherise Udell 001 801 582 9360, 510 306 6963
Dr. Brian Moench 001 801 243 9089
Joro Walker 001 801 487 9911
“We filed this law suit to protect the health of 2 million people. All air pollution is not created equal and Kennecott’s is some of the most toxic there is.”
Dr. Brian Moench, President, Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment
Wasatch Front air pollution, sometimes the worst in the nation, has been in the national and international media spotlight this year. The largest single source of air pollution in Salt Lake County is the Rio Tinto/Kennecott open pit copper mine. In 2010, the DAQ issued a permit for the mine to expand and pollute more, but clean air groups said, “Not so fast.” They filed a lawsuit stating that expansion was illegal because it was never approved by the EPA which is a violation of the Clean Air Act. The court hearing on this suit is today!
What: Multiple clean air groups have filed suit in federal court against Rio Tinto/Kennecott for exceeding the EPA’s approved limit of their mining activity. For the DAQ to issue a permit for expansion is not enough to satisfy the requirements of the law.
When: Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2013, 2:30 pm.
Where: Federal Courthouse, 350 So. Main St., Rm 220.
Why: The major cities of Utah suffer severe air pollution problems virtually every winter and often during the summer. The American Lung Association give us the grade of “F” for particulate pollution and ozone. The EPA ranks Salt Lake County the second most toxic county in the nation, primarily because of the heavy metal pollution and dust created by Kennecott every day of the year.
“Utah is not going to solve our pollution problems if we let our largest industrial polluters increase their emissions at will, and in this case illegally,” said Tim Wagner of the Sierra Club.
“The health of our families especially our children should be our number one priority in Utah,” said Cherise Udell, of Utah Moms for Clean Air. “We can no longer allow Kennecott to pass their costs of doing business on to this community and sacrifice our health and quality of life in the process.”
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Kennecott defends Utah mining from challenge