Monday, August 23, 2010

NYLPI’s and the PCB-Free NYC Schools Coalition’s final written submission to the EPA

Here is NYLPI’s and the PCB-Free NYC Schools Coalition’s final written submission to the EPA regarding the proposed rule that would lower some regulatory protections for PCBs. It was delivered on Friday, August 20th, 2010. Many thanks to the folks who attended hearings, participated in strategy sessions and contributed to the drafting of the document. There’s also an impressive list of supporting organizations on the signer’s page and it shows that there’s a growing community of committed advocates, parents and experts working to protect our environmental health. To learn more, please contact Gigi Gazon at

*Note* Refer to our post from August 4, 2010:

August 20, 2010

Document Control Office (7407M)
Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics (OPPT)
Environmental Protection Agency
1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW
Washington, DC 20460

Re: Advance notice of proposed rulemaking on PCB use authorizations

Docket No. EPA-HQ-OPPT-2009-0757
Dear Madam/Sir:
For two years and several months, New York City (NYC) has been home to a series of community efforts to rid schools of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and in particular of the PCBs found in caulk. A Bronx coalition of concerned parents, the NYC Coalition for PCB-Free Schools, together with parents, school maintenance workers, teachers, and community members from across the metro area, has worked with environmental justice, environmental, and labor organizations, staff members at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and elected officials to advocate for action on this emerging public health threat. This firm has partnered with the coalition in these efforts and represented one of its members in litigation over PCBs in her daughter’s Bronx elementary school. We now submit these comments in response to the advance notice captioned above on behalf of the coalition and other organizations and individuals profoundly troubled by EPA’s current proposal to weaken or eliminate its regulations pertaining to PCBs in caulk and other non-liquid products. We strongly urge EPA not to take this large step in the wrong direction. PCBs in caulk pose a significant threat to children’s health and demand more regulation and enforcement, not less.

Friday, August 20, 2010

NY1 on PCBs

This clip features Gigi Gazon, Community Organizer for New York Lawyers to the Public Interest. Gigi provides technical and organizing assistance to the NYC PCB-free Schools Coalition.

Higher Than Accepted Levels of PCBs Found in Three City Schools

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Elevated PCB Levels in Schools

Yesterday, the New York Times published this article:Tests Find Elevated PCB Levels in 3 Public Schools. . .
What are your thoughts?

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Staten Island Live on PCBs

Staten Island Live is keeping up to date on the PCBs matter!! Here are two articles to check out:

What are your thoughts? Comments?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

What happened at the EPA hearing?

Parents turned out in force on July 29th at the Hilton Times Square to bring the EPA a strong message about PCB-contaminated caulk. It struck me that the middle of a street filled with promises of frivolous entertainment was an unlikely place to witness what turned out to be a serious and passionate public meeting (to learn more about what this public meeting was for, please see the previous post, below). In attendance were parents, teachers and advocates representing the Bronx, Brooklyn, Manhattan and Staten Island. Here’s a smattering of highlights as seen from my seat in the middle row: