Alaska Leads U.S. In Releasing Toxic Chemicals


Not so fast says the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) in response to a new report from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The report states that Alaska led the nation in releasing toxic chemicals tracked by the agency in 2018, according to an article from the Juneau Empire. The DEC says those numbers don’t tell the whole story.

According to the article, 30 facilities across the state released 971.9 million pounds of Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) chemicals in 2018 – reportedly the most in the U.S. by volume. DEC Commissioner Jason Brune notes that the vast majority of that release are land releases related to mining and don’t have a significant impact on public health. The EPA published a guide to help explain metal mining data alongside the report that acknowledges TRI data “is not in itself enough to determine the level if any of public exposure to toxic chemicals” because large mines relocate millions of tons of excavated waste rock.

Read the entire article here.

Chemical Processing Staff, 19 February 2020