Liberal Moms Not Happy That Scott Pruitt Vows To Clean Up Radioactive Landfill

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt takes questions about the Trump administration's withdrawal of the U.S. from the Paris climate accords during the daily briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S. June 2, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan ErnstEnvironmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt takes questions about the Trump administration's withdrawal of the U.S. from the Paris climate accords during the daily briefing at the White House in Washington, U.S. June 2, 2017. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

For 25 years, the West Lake Landfill located in Bridgetown, Missouri has been on the Environmental Protection Agency’s Superfund priority list — to cleanup nuclear waste illegally dumped there in 1973.  EPA Director Scott Pruitt vowed “to get things done at West Lake.”

Recently, Pruitt declared that companies that own Superfund sites like West Lake “are going to be held accountable.”

“They’re going to get these areas cleaned up, or they are going to be sued by this agency,” Pruitt added.

The companies that own the sites, not by taxpayer money, will fund the cleanup costs. This should be welcome news to Just Moms STL, a group of activists who have been literally yelling since 2013, for the EPA to clean up the site.

“Our Mission Is To Bring Awareness To The Radioactive Material That Is Interspersed Throughout The St. Louis Metropolitan Area, And Areas That Have Been Deeply Affected By These Materials,” notes Just Moms on its website.

But Dawn Chapman, who co-founded Just Moms with Karen Nikel, told The Washington Post that Pruitt’s promise to finally cleanup the West Lake Landfill isn’t enough.

“It’s got to be done the right way. There’s no Harry Potter wand here.”

The mother of three added: “Why our site? Why now? Can he keep those promises?”

President Barack Obama’s administration didn’t do anything to clean up of the West Lake Landfill. For a mom who claims, “the nuclear waste dump has filled her days and nights with worry,” Chapman should be relieved that Pruitt has pledged to clean it up.

‘Just Moms’ should be called ‘Just Unions,’ because it may very well be a front group for the Teamsters — to transfer the cleanup from Republic Services, which happens to be the owner of West Lake Landfill — to government union jobs.

How has a group of moms become a potent lobbying force on the state and federal level? Why would a group of moms care who cleans up the West Lake Landfill?

The group hosted town hall meetings, amassed 18,000 members to its Facebook page, and lobbied members of Congress. It has been described as “a surprisingly powerful force.” The evidence suggests that ‘Just Moms’ may be controlled, bought, and directed by a sophisticated lobbying group otherwise known as the Teamsters Union…whose members, conveniently, stand to gain a lot.

The Teamsters Union mentions ‘Just Moms’ in numerous press releases and other communications materials on its website.  Moreover, the Teamsters Union has hosted press conferences and educational events with ‘Just Moms.’

In the 1970s, environmental groups raised health concerns about industrial waste sites, and as a result, in 1980, Congress passed the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA); which came be known as the “Superfund,” and the sites flagged for clean up were called ‘Superfund Sites.’

“EPA’s Superfund program is responsible for cleaning up some of the nation’s most contaminated land and responding to environmental emergencies, oil spills and natural disasters,” notes the agency’s website.

The EPA created a National Priorities List to speed up clean up of sites. The West Lake Landfill has been on that list for 25 years. As in this case, it can take a quarter of a century for a site on the list to get analyzed, reviewed, and readied for cleaned up.

Numerous studies conducted by the EPA have concluded the West Lake Landfill is safe.

In 2015, the EPA concluded:

The available scientific data indicate that people living near and working outside the boundary of the West Lake Landfill are not currently being exposed to contaminants from West Lake Landfill that are above a level of concern.

Nearly 43 years ago, nuclear waste was dumped on the landfill. But while ‘Just Moms’ and the Teamsters Union howl the landfill is dangerous, experts say their claims are “overblown and misplaced.” The International Commission on Radiological Protection concluded that ingesting over an ounce of contaminated soil from the West Lake would deliver the same radiation as an entire body CT Scan.

Since 2013 when ‘Just Moms’ was founded, the Teamsters have been known to go bonkers over the landfill. But rather than allowing the cleanup to move forward as planned, the Teamsters joined ‘Just Moms,’ demanding the cleanup be transferred to the Army Corp of Engineers — which would result in a huge delay.

If the Army Corps of Engineers were to do the work, it would cost taxpayers $400 million and create lots of higher-wage public sector union worker jobs. About 20% of the 1.4 million Teamsters workers in America are employed by the federal government.

If Republic Services cleans up the landfill, the cost would be about $50 million, and the work could begin immediately — at no cost to taxpayers. “It’s not a matter of money,” as Pruitt said.  And he’s right. The Superfund budget is bursting with cleanup money. It literally receives $1billion a year in funding.

Maybe the histrionics ‘Just Moms’ and the Teamsters are raising over the West Lake Landfill cleanup is more about politics than health concerns.  And maybe ‘Just Moms’ isn’t just moms.

Crystal Wright
the authorCrystal Wright
Political Pundit, radio host, TV commentator, editor of the popular blog, www.conservativeblackchick.com & Principal Owner of Baker Wright Group, a full service public relations firm. Over 53,000 followers on Twitter @GOPBlackChick. In January 2016, Regnery Publishing will be publishing Wright’s forthcoming book Con Job. Crystal Wright is a black conservative woman living in Washington, D.C. She regularly hosts Cumulus owned station, WMAL’s Saturday show. Some would say she is a triple minority: woman, black and a Republican living in a Democrat dominated city. She’s contemplating moving back to her home state of Virginia, where her vote would count for something. By day, Crystal is a communications consultant and editor and publisher of the website, www.conservativeblackchick.com. Her goal is to get Americans thinking critically about whom and what they are voting for on the local and national level. Crystal also has contributed articles to CNN.com, the Telegraph, the Guardian, and Townhall. A critic of President Obama and his radical liberal policies, Crystal has written extensively on domestic policy issues as well as some foreign policy topics. She regularly provides political commentary to several major news outlets, including CNN, Fox News Channel, Fox Business Channel, and Wilkow Majority on SirusXM. In 2014, Crystal enjoyed becoming a regular guest co-hosting for conservative talk radio and Cumulus owned station WMAL’s Washington Mornings and hosting WMAL’s Saturday show. Crystal has appeared on MSNBC, PBS’ To the Contrary, The Blaze TV, and Bill Bennett’s Morning in America, Crystal has also appeared on the Geraldo Rivera Radio Show, Sean Hannity’s Radio Show, Washington Watch with Roland Martin, BET’s Weekly with Ed Gordon, WVON’s The Cliff Kelly Show, The New School hosted by Charles Ellison on Sirius/XM Satellite Radio, and provided commentary to the Washington Post, New York Times, Loop 21, Politic365, AP, and the Washington Informer. When she’s not in DC writing away, Crystal enjoys speaking to conservative groups like the Clare Boothe Luce Policy Institute. She was honored to speak at the Conservative Political Action Conference’s 2014 meeting in a featured panel Why Conservatism is Right for Women. Crystal also spoke in 2013 at CPAC’s 40th anniversary in a featured panel The Right View and the REAL Issues with four other distinguished conservative women. In 2012, Crystal was honored to speak about the rise of GOP women in politics to a group of Minnesota Republicans and joined other Republican women at CPAC Colorado in a panel discussion about the False War on Women. She also had the pleasure of speaking to students at the Claire Boothe Luce Policy Institute, University of Tennessee, George Washington University, American University and Furman University and to numerous conservative groups around the country. Crystal joined other panelists in a town hall discussion on state Voter ID laws hosted by the 2012 Congressional Black Caucus Annual Legislative Conference. During the 2011 Congressional Black Caucus ALC, Crystal moderated a panel discussion hosted by Congressman Allen West entitled Blacks in the Military: Past, Present and Future. Crystal also joined the World Journalism Institute’s 2011 CPAC panel discussion on New Media & the Tea Party. She shared her perspective on how social media gave rise to the Tea Party and helped the Republicans sweep the 2010 mid-term Congressional elections and gain control of the House of Representatives. Crystal actively donates to conservative candidates. Crystal earned a Bachelor of Arts in English from Georgetown University and holds a Masters of Fine Arts in Theatre from Virginia Commonwealth University. She is the principal owner of the Baker Wright Group, LLC (www.bakerwright.com), a full service public relations firm, specializing in communications counseling, media relations, message development, political consulting, media training and crisis communications. The firm’s approach is straight forward counseling: an unvarnished approach to public relations.

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