West Virginia Chemical-Spill Site Avoided Broad Regulatory Scrutiny
Contamination Highlights Gaps in Regulations, Prompts Questions on Potential Threats
The Wall Street Freakin Rupert-Murcoch-Owned Journal.
The WALL STREET JOURNAL thinks there are "gaps" in regulations. Do you have any idea how lax your regulatory climate has to be for the WSJ to think there are gaps and that there are questions? Because their default position is to scream about over-regulation crippling American Industry and Freedommmmm!!!
Now one rarely says this about a Murdoch-owned paper, but the Journal does have a point.
The site of a West Virginia chemical spill that contaminated the water supply for 300,000 people operated largely outside government oversight, highlighting gaps in regulations and prompting questions on whether local communities have a firm grasp on potential threats to drinking water.
The storage facility owned by Freedom Industries Inc. on the banks of the Elk River was subject to almost no state and local monitoring, interviews and records show. The industrial chemical that leaked into the river, 4-methylcyclohexane methanol, isn't closely tracked by federal programs. A state regulator had said earlier that, before last week's spill, environmental inspectors hadn't visited the site since 1991.
1991! How the hell could they go 24 years without an inspection? They're not a fertilizer plant!
So how could this happen?
Matthew Blackwood, chairman of a county-level group that develops local emergency-response plans, said Sunday the group didn't know that stores of the chemical were sitting upriver from the area's largest water-treatment plant."We definitely had not thought of water contamination on this scale," he said Sunday. "I don't want to overregulate private industry, but this does show that there are some chemicals that fall under the radar."