Feb 20, 2013

EPA Petition Alleges "Imminent & Substantial" Danger to Health

On behalf of two young children residing at 4830 Glenbrook Road, Luisa Z., 22 months old, and Lucas Z., 5 years and 10 months old ... I am urgently seeking your personal attention to address an imminent danger to these Children in the Spring Valley community of Washington DC.  I request that you review and grant the Children's petition under RCRA Sec. 7003 that USEPA: (1) investigate and determine whether the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has violated Executive Order 13045: Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks, and (2) act immediately to order the relocation of the Children while USACE excavates for chemical weapon materials (CWM) and explosives less than 15 yards from where the Children live and play ...
Executive Order 13045, Attachment 4, states:
"A growing body of scientific knowledge demonstrates that children may suffer disproportionately from environmental health and safety risks ... each federal agency (a) shall make it a high priority to identify and assess environmental health risk and safety risks that may disproportionately affect children; and (b) shall insure that its policies, programs, activities, and standards address disproportionate risks to children that result from environmental health risks or safety risks. "

The above-noted deficiencies of the USACE HHRA and MEC HA constitute a clear violation of the words and intent of E.O. 13045.  I request that (a) USEPA initiate a prompt investigation of how and why the special CWM risks to the Children have not been adequately assessed by USACE, and (b) USEPA use its authorities under Section 7003 to issue an Administrative Order requiring USACE to undertake and complete a new CWM exposure hazard assessment specific to the Children.
After exploring the facts concerning the appeal, members of the RAB voted to express sympathy for your situation and to encourage the USACE to meet with you and your husband for the express purpose of providing a resolution satisfactory to your concerns and fears regarding the demolition of the house at 4825 Glenbrook Road and subsequent remedial work ...
At the public RAB meeting for September, all community members who spoke were in favor of a resolution that would remove your children from the area during the remedial response.  Speakers included the local elementary school principal who was concerned about the safety of her students that would be passing the site daily traveling to and from school ...The USACE has been actively working with the community to build a relationship based on trust.  Relations with the community have dramatically improved in recent years.  This strong community relationship appears to be in jeopardy.  There is clearly strong community support for your position in this matter, and it would be in the best interest of the USACE to resolve this matter.

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