A coalition comprising 10 nongovernmental groups submitted a list of demands to lawmakers Thursday, seeking amendments to a bill on soil pollution currently under scrutiny in the House of Representatives.
The group said the bill has major flaws and is demanding that six specific points be addressed. According to the group, the bill would not restrict the removal of dirt from contaminated sites and warns that it could be carted away and dumped in valleys and rural farmland where it would leach into ground water.
The group is also demanding that the bill include a provision under which citizens would be allowed to request pollution surveys of suspicious sites. It wants municipal heads — not only governors as specified under the current bill — to have the power to approve or deny surveys.
The document demands that more information regarding pollution be publicized, that sites in which harmful chemicals are handled be subject to surveys at any time — not just when they are up for sale or redevelopment — and urges that the legislation be revised in three years, rather than a decade.
The controversial bill was expected to be adopted by the House of Representatives Environment Committee on Friday.
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