Wyoming Is State # 3 With Most People Living Near Toxic Waste Facilities | Regional news
Company sites across the United States routinely release toxins into surrounding soil, air, and water, and often without the knowledge of surrounding communities.
After an accidental release from a chemical plant in West Virginia in 1985, Congress passed the Communities’ Right to Know and Emergency Planning Act. The law established the EPA’s Toxic Release Inventory (TRI), which provides citizens with crucial information on locally released toxins and the names of emitting companies. The TRI has enabled some states to put in place emission reduction legislation to protect public health, as was the case when Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker passed a law in 2019 allocating $ 2.4 billion. dollars to climate change resilience.
Stacker analyzed data from the EPA TRI and the United States Census Bureau’s five-year US Community Survey to identify the percentage of each state’s population living in census tracts with toxic release sites. , as well as the companies and facilities responsible for the highest emissions of toxins. annually. These results, released in October 2021, reflect the last full year of data, 2020, of the 2020 national analysis dataset.
Keep reading to find out where most toxins are released in your condition, what part of your environment they can pollute, and who is affected. You can also read the national history here.
Wyoming in numbers
– Population living near toxic waste sites: 32.5%
— 29.8% of the state‘s white population
— 34.1% of the state’s Hispanic population
— 23.6% of the state’s black population
— 33.9% of the state’s Native American population
— 29.3% of the state’s Asian population
— 27.2% of the state’s Native Hawaiian / Pacific Islander population
– Total number of sites: 51
Most of the toxins released into the Wyoming environment in 2020 ended up in state lands, but a significant portion was released into the air. That year, 51% of the state’s air pollution was ammonia and 14% sulfuric acid aerosols. Dyno Nobel’s factory in Cheyenne was responsible for releasing over 5.7 million pounds of toxins.
The EPA’s TRI program recognizes 770 chemicals, with any site that manufactures or uses these chemicals at above-average levels qualifying for listing in the TRI. The chemicals TRI described as “toxic” are known to cause cancer and other negative health problems, as well as negative effects on the environment. Facilities report the amounts of chemicals they release each year to the TRI, with the ‘release’ of a chemical meaning that it is’ emitted to air or water, or placed in some type of environment. ‘land disposal’.
TRI facilities are generally quite large and deal with electricity, metals, mining, chemicals or hazardous waste. However, not all toxic chemicals used by companies are listed in the TRI, which means that its inventory of toxin emission sites is not exhaustive.
Keep reading to find out which states have the most and the fewest people living near toxic release sites.
States with the greatest number of people living near toxic release sites
# 1. Wisconsin: 37.3% of the population living near toxic discharge sites
# 2. Iowa: 33.5% of the population living near toxic waste sites
# 3. Wyoming: 32.5% of the population living near toxic waste sites
States with the fewest people living near toxic release sites
# 1. Hawaii: 6.5% of the population living near toxic waste sites
# 2. New York: 8.3% of the population living near toxic waste sites
# 3. California: 8.4% of the population living near toxic waste sites