LETTER TO EDITOR: Tell State Senators to not Support Greater Water Toxicity

Updated 2 years ago Special to HuntingtonNews.Net

Dear Editor,

A bill currently under consideration by the WV Senate will cause water companies to use expensive filters, for which you pay, to filter more out heavier concentrations of toxins, chemicals, and carcinogens.  Who pays for this and changing expensive filters? The customers of the water company. All of us.

Citizens can use this link to access information about the bill and automatically send a short letter. https://actionnetwork.org/letters/wv-senate-say-no-to-hb-2506

My open letter is below.
    Dear Senators,
HB 2506 is a travesty. The change in calculations is a joke and a con. Average doesn't count with poisons, carcinogens, toxics substances. There is nothing scientifically safe about this plan. Anyone with the least understanding of science, chemistry, math, or medicine, knows this is a recipe periodic higher toxicity, and more per year. This is just like saying taking in one day all medicine prescribed for a month. That could kill you. No doctor would say it's the monthly average of medicine that counts, so take however much you want at time, just don't exceed the recommended average over time.

Allowing this average of dumping is the same. It will allow higher levels of these poisons, toxins, and chemicals at a time. The average never for one minute should exceed the current minimum.

Allowing toxic dumpers to locate closer to the overlapping mixing zones is dangerous. Is not the state responsible for protecting us? By changing these guidelines, will not the state be sued over the next big spill that makes mess like the one in Charleston.

During times when water levels are low, the concentrations will be high. Wild and beautiful WV is becoming toxic and ugly. What about the wildlife drinking out of streams and rivers, and the fish?

Higher levels of these chemicals at times could overwhelm filters at water companies and make people sick.

This is stupid. I resent having to buy bottled water to drink, because the water can not be trusted. It is unfair that through higher water bills, I have to pay to filter out the toxins they are dumping in the river. They are dumping their business costs on us, the citizens. They should filter these toxins out of anything they dump in the river. Are the corporations and investors who poison the streams and rivers also make money off of bottled water? That would be a good law, that no one can nest in both.

Please consider the cumulative build up of multiple toxins, carcinogens, poisons, and chemicals, everyday, every hour, every drink of water, and every breathe. Multiply by numerous corporations dumping many types of toxins, etc. The build up over time is a massive stress on our kidneys, livers, and bodies. Also the higher amounts at certain times that this law will allow, is indefensible, as more in any particular day could overwhelm a person's system. This is Flint Michigan in slow motion, with multiple toxins, etc. not just lead. Corporations and executives are using our bodies as the ultimate filters of their faulty business practices, and the true costs of excessive salaries and millions in bonuses for executives. We are drinking gather trash.

Water companies do not even test for many of these chemicals and toxins. The corporations using these chemicals, etc. should filter them out before discharging.

With regards to the tank law. Do not change that to exempt coal and gas. It doesn't matter what industry has tanks that leak, it's a leak. None should be exempt from the law.

How would you like a mess in your district, like what happened in Charleston? Can our district bear the costs, the closed businesses, schools. and lost wages? Who will be blamed if you weaken the law, and something happens? What legislators will be voted out? Did the companies that caused the Charleston spill pay for all the damages? No. Did they pay American Water all costs to flush out the pipes? Did they pay to replace about 16 filters worth about $80,000 each ? Did they pay for all the bottled water provided and donated? NO, NO, NO ! They filed bankruptcy.

Our water bills are rising in part because of the water companies having to spend so much to filter out some of this. But they don't even test for this. And they do not get it all out. You are therefore robbing every family family in your district and WV that uses water to pay for filtering out things that never should be discharged into water, things that about part of manufacturing, etc. and corporate irresponsibility.     Also, the small middlemen contractors should not be housing these chemicals tied to coal and gas. The big companies and power plants using these chemicals should store them. At least they have assets to cover more of the liability if something happens.

As one of your constituents, I ask you to protect our water from more toxins and reject HB 2506. This legislation would allow more toxins harmful to human health into drinking water supplies by:

- Increasing the amount of toxic pollutants discharged by industrial sites through changes to the "critical design flow" calculation in permits. You can see how this change would impact waters in your district here: www.wvrivers.org/archive/7Q10vsHMF.pdf
- Allowing toxic dischargers to locate closer together through larger and overlapping "mixing zones".
Please reject these changes to the critical design flow and mixing zones that will allow more toxins and cancer-causing chemicals in our waters.
Thank you for your consideration.
Marilyn Howells
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