Eighteen years ago, the EPA created the Toxic Release Inventory regulations, forcing big companies to release data on how much toxic waste they create and what they do with it. According to this article, since it's inception, industrial pollution has dropped some 40 percent. It seems that the EPA has decided to weaken the regulations, allowing companies to release 4-10 times more toxins than previously allowed without making a report.
According to Abby Rubley, a spokeswoman for Environment Michigan, a nonprofit watchdog group, the "EPA's actions take us back to the dark ages when the public knew nothing about toxic releases and when companies couldn't be held accountable for pollution that threatened public health."
All auto manufacturers will be impacted by this, and responding to inquiries, GM spokeswoman Sharon Morton said, "GM is on holiday this week, and no one's seen what the changes are yet, so we really can't comment yet on how this will specifically impact our reporting. All we can say at this point is we are going to continue to make environmental information available through our website and through letters and community meetings like we have in the past. We have a rigorous system to collect all that information on a monthly basis, and that's still going to be the case. We're not going to stop collecting the data."
Thanks for the tip, Carl!
[Source: The Flint Journal via mlive.com]