Wednesday, September 27, 2017

This We'll Pollute

United States military and its contractors are the only people in the United States allowed to dispose of hazardous waste at highly polluting 'open burn' sites. It makes full use of this exemption.

Open burn sites are banned because of the potentially dangerous levels of air pollution resulting from their use. The Pentagon and its contractors operate 61 open burn sites with no environmental emissions controls across the country. The result, according to the EPA, is that the Pentagon and its contractors have contaminated an area larger than the state of Florida.

ProPublica has investigated the military's use of open burn sites and the potentially lethal pollution that they cause. In Open Burns, Ill Winds they examine how the military gets rid of hazardous material at a potentially huge cost to the health of people living nearby. The article includes interactive maps of the military's active and abandoned hazardous waste sites. The markers on these maps are sized to reflect the number of EPA violations recorded at each site.

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