Unprecedented Convergence of Communities To Expose Unlawful and Dangerous CEMEX acrivities.
( Los Angeles, CA ) – Reflecting mounting opposition by citizens’ groups and government agencies in at least five states across the nation, a number of local community organizations and city interests have formed a National Alliance to fight multinational giant CEMEX and its mining operations across the United States. This first of its kind national alliance is comprised of active citizens groups from Colorado , California , Ohio , Florida and Michigan that have had to form to fight unlawful or dangerous activities at CEMEX operations in their communities.
CEMEX has a history of violating state and federal regulations across the . It has been cited for thousands of air and water violations in at least eight states – California, New Mexico, Colorado, Alabama, Florida, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Tennessee – and has already paid $4.5 million dollars in state and federal environmental fines.
The Alliance ’s first action was to send the attached letter to the Mexico-based multinational conglomerate to urge the company to abide by all state and federal air, water and environmental standards, and to work more openly and honestly with communities where they operate or are buying plants. They will coordinate efforts and resources to communicate with broader media, shareholders and political leaders about the questionable activities of CEMEX in communities across .
COLORADO – “The track record of operating violations at CEMEX demonstrates a disregard for the well-being of this community. After examining the compliance history for CEMEX, compiled by the Colorado Air Pollution Control Division, we are appalled at the dire conditions depicted. They have back-to-back Notices of Violation, and a Compliance Order that includes penalties for poor air pollution control practices and a penalty for the absence of pollution controls that the company asserted that it had as a condition of its permit. Instead of cleaning up their act or being shut down, they negotiate down the amount of the fines and continue operating, and even intend to expand their operation to include burning tires. We do not trust this company to protect the health and environment of the residents in our community,” said Anne George, Steering Committee, St. Vrain Valley Community Watchdogs, Colorado .
OHIO – “In March, 2005 the USEPA cited CEMEX for violations of the Prevention of Significant Deterioration in Part C of the Clean Air Act, dating back to 1997. The Notice of Violation and Finding of Violation stand as unresolved at this time. Also, in July, 2006, the Regional Air Pollution Control Agency (RAPCA) issued a Warning Letter to CEMEX for installing an access door on the preheater tower without a permit. Fairborn Citizens must obey the law. Why Doesn’t CEMEX? CEMEX has also requested an exemption from the permitting process to do a 42-day trial burn using old tires. How can they be trusted?” said Dawn Falleur, Green Environmental Coalition, Yellow Springs, Ohio .
CA - “CEMEX clearly has a track record of averting local community control, and going against the wishes of the communities where they operate. We must work together to protect local control, and the health, safety, and quality of life of our residents,” said Mayor Laurene Weste, Santa Clarita, California .
FLORIDA – “In spite of two previous denials by the Manatee County Commission, CEMEX continued to press for approval to construct a concrete ready mix plant in close proximity to several residential communities and schools. Hundreds of neighbors representing several nearby communities vigorously expressed their strong objections to allowing this proposed plant to be built. Seeing this concerted opposition, while anticipating long delays in the continued pursuit of the approval process, CEMEX recently agreed to work with Manatee County officials in an attempt to identify a mutually acceptable alternate site. Only time will tell to help us determine the legitimacy of CEMEX’s recent actions,” said Clint Miller, Chairman of the East Manatee County Coalition, Florida.
MICHIGAN – “WATCH had good communications with the management team at CEMEX during the time they owned the cement plant in Charlevoix but little results from our efforts. CEMEX was out of compliance most of the time with stack emissions. They had problems with dust control around the plant. They made no effort to control noise. CEMEX had a serious fuel oil spill that was not detected for months. Several thousand gallons of fuel oil leaked into the ground beneath the plant resulting in a clean-up that lasted for years. The difference between CEMEX and the current owner, St. Mary's Cement, is like night and day. St. Mary's has been doing a clean-up of the physical plant, they have installed a new bag house facility which has them in compliance with a dramatic drop in particulate emissions, they have vastly improved blasting techniques, they have employed noise and lighting control measures, they have installed a "green" berm around the quarry and they have been completely open and accessible about everything,” said Bill Henny, President of The Water and Air Team for Charlevoix (WATCH), Michigan.
OHIO – "As parents we have great cause for concern — we hold some of the most sensitive individuals to air pollution, our children, under our care. We dedicate ourselves to raising healthy children, feeding them natural food, avoiding toxic products and then must send them out to play in some of the most polluted air in the country. What else can we do as parents but stand up to protect our children from corporations like CEMEX, who pollute without care for our children’s health and welfare," said Aimee
Lunde Maruyama, Parents Against Burning Tires.
More information about CEMEX activities in specific states and communities can be found at: www.coloradocitizens.org ; www.greenlink.org ; www.StopCEMEXMegaMine.com ; www.cleanairohio.org; www.stvrainwatchdogs.org; firstname.lastname@example.org
The Letter To Cemex President Gilberto Perez:
Mr. Gilberto Perez
840 Gessner Rd., Suite 1400
Houston, TX 77024
Laurene Weste, Mayor Jaime Rall
City of Santa Clarita, CA Colorado Citizens Campaign, CO
Aimee Maruyama Clint Miller
Parents Against Burning Tires, OH East Mantee County Coalition, FL
Kari Basey Dawn Falleur
Mothers Agaist Burning Tires, CO Green Environmental Coalition, OH
Ann George Teresa B. Mills
St. Vrain Valley Community Watchdogs, CO Buckeye Environmental Network
cc: U.S. President George W. Bush