Flora Champenois is a litigation assistant in the Northeast regional office's Philadelphia, PA location.
On a sunny Wednesday in Wilmington, California, this week, instead of spending the day at work or taking their kids to the beach, community members gathered to tell the Environmental Protection Agency what it is like living near large oil refineries. The stories kept pouring in; children who were too sick to be allowed outside, explosions that send neighbors scurrying to safety, a pre-school teacher explaining how she has to evacuate her kids when the odors get too strong, and parents who can’t afford the medicine their kids need.
Legal Petition: Community Leaders, Advocates Call on Secretary of Transportation To Ban Use of Hazardous Rail Cars
What action did the petitioners take? Today, two conservation organizations, Sierra Club and Forest Ethics, filed a formal legal petition with the U.S. Department of Transportation (“DOT”) demanding that the agency issue an emergency order prohibiting the use of unsafe rail cars— known as DOT-111s—to carry Bakken crude oil and other similarly explosive crudes. In September 2013, DOT initiated a process that will likely result in a phase-out of DOT-111s and other dangerous rail cars.
It was a good day in court for Earthjustice and our clients after four years of fighting to protect the roadless forest in western Colorado from a coal mine that would deal a double whammy of damage through road construction and millions of tons of climate pollution.
The Sunset Roadless Area is a 5,800-acre area within the Gunnison National Forest that provides great backcountry hiking and hunting, as well as habitat for goshawk, black bear, elk, and the imperiled lynx.