For immediate release
Media contact: Riikka Pohjankoski, 713-589-7079, [email protected]
“We cannot accept” another chemical fire in Houston area
December 23, 2021, statement from Jennifer Hadayia, executive director of Air Alliance Houston:
“Chemical fires and explosions happen too often in the Houston area and across Texas because corporations, like Exxon Mobil, are allowed to operate in a way that endangers families and workers. It was just in 2019 when another fire at Exxon Mobil in Baytown injured 37 people. This happens because in Texas, right now, it can cost less to be caught polluting than to continue to pollute. We cannot accept this. These disasters are preventable, and our communities deserve greater accountability, transparency and protections.
“We thank the emergency responders and urge people in and near Baytown to follow their safety instructions. Though we are awaiting details about the impact to air quality from today’s incident, we know that particulate matter (PM) is a significant health concern following a fire. Therefore, we also urge children, older adults, people with existing chronic diseases, and pregnant women to be especially careful since they are more susceptible to the health impacts from air pollution.”
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Air Alliance Houston is a non-profit advocacy organization working to reduce the public health impacts from air pollution and advance environmental justice through applied research, education, and advocacy. For more information and resources, please visit www.airalliancehouston.org.