Stolthaven Reported Chemical Release to the State

| Press Releases

September 14, 2012                                  For Immediate Release

Contact:          Anne Rolfes, Founding Director, Louisiana Bucket Brigade, (504) 452-4909

                        Fred Schwarz, Organic citrus farmer, (504) 289-4633

(New Orleans) A report from Stolthaven to the Louisiana Department of Environmental (DEQ)Quality confirms that chemicals were released from the tanks, though the amount is unknown given the mixed messages from the company. The report confirms what is obvious from aerial pictures of the facility. The report is available at: http://www.labucketbrigade.org/downloads/SH%20REPORT.pdf

The report to the state was made on September 11th and does not provide specific quantities for the oils and potential chemicals released. This report states that the total quantities do not exceed 38,707 gallons, an amount far lower than the 191,000 gallon report to the National Response Center.

Stolthaven officials have claimed that a report filed to the National Response Center on September 12th was filed in error, and only represented the company’s worst case scenario. “I am skeptical of this excuse,” said Anne Rolfes of the Louisiana Bucket Brigade. “Even an amateur manager knows that these reports include what actually happened, not worst case scenarios.” Stolthaven officials have given confusing and conflicting statements in written reports and during an interview with Chris Miller on WWL radio.

What has not been disputed is the company’s failure to prepare for Hurricane Isaac. The tanks that were damaged were likely in shoddy condition before the storm; Stolthaven may have failed to follow hurricane preparedness guidelines in preparing the tanks.

The problems continue as residents return and rebuild. Organic citrus farmer Fred Schwarz is concerned about his livelihood and the long term impact on the local economy. To listen to his concerns, follow the link below.
The Louisiana Bucket Brigade is an environmental health and justice organization supporting neighborhoods’ use of grassroots action to create informed, sustainable communities free from industrial pollution.

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