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Re: let's build a unified movement, not fight each other

  Jon Wrote
  >> there are a large number of well-meaning people in
  >> the government who really want their agencies to
  >> do the right thing (example: William Sanjour), it should
  >> be obvious to most people that the EPA's role is
  >> to instutionalize the status quo and guarantee the
  >> viability of the chemical and industrial giants.
  and Sam replied
  >I could not disagree more. ...... Stick to specific examples and
  >blame the specific people who watered down the regs, not the troops as
  >a whole who make honest efforts.
  It can be difficult to take that approach when you are involved in grass 
  roots campaigning and time and time again see regulators with an arrogant 
  approach to pollution control (defined by Paul Connett as 'ignorance 
  mixed with over confidence').  It is difficult not to believe that we are 
  up against an effective 'regulatory industrial complex' where 'regulator 
  capture' has transformed many officers into agents for the industry they 
  are regulating
  These regulators stand on platforms with their industrial partners and 
  constantly defend the status quo as being 'safe' and 'sustainable'.  
  Environmentalists often have no option other than to discredit the 
  regulators who put those arguments.  Of course we can congratulate them 
  on the relatively rare (in the UK) times that they take positive action 
  to protect the environment - but most of the time they are in a deeply 
  compromised position with industry and vested interests being far too 
  As flavour of the UK situation (and to bring the discussion back closer 
  on topic) this is how ENDS (Environmental Data Services - a neutral 
  source) reported the UK Environment Committee review of the performance 
  of our Environment Agency on the regulation of cement kilns:
  UK Environment Agency "inefficiency" slammed 
  ENDS Daily - 06/03/97 
  A UK parliamentary committee has launched a stinging attack 
  on the country's main pollution regulator, the Environment 
  Agency.  In a report published today, the House of Commons 
  Environment Committee has accused the Agency of 
  "inefficiency", "lack of foresight", "serious inadequacies" 
  in emissions monitoring and "failure...to command public 
  The Committee's report focuses on the environmental 
  implications of solvent burning in cement kilns and on the 
  performance of the Environment Agency in regulating the 
  A growing number of cement works in the UK are burning 
  "secondary liquid fuel" (SLF) - a mixture of industrial 
  wastes and waste solvents - to reduce fuel costs.  The 
  practice is also widespread in the USA and European 
  countries including France, Germany, Belgium, Sweden, 
  Switzerland and Austria.  UK environmental groups have 
  attacked the use of SLF as "hazardous waste incineration by 
  the back door". 
  In its report, the Committee accuses the Agency of 
  dismissing objections to cement kilns by members of the 
  public in favour of industry's views.  "[Agency] inspectors 
  should not automatically believe what they are told by 
  industry", the report says. 
         _\\|//_                Alan Watson C.Eng                  
        (' O^O ')               Oakleigh                      
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