MEDIA ADVISORY: Bloomington Council to Hear Resolution Commemorating Bhopal Disaster

M E D I A   A D V I S O R Y    

BLOOMINGTON COUNCIL TO HEAR RESOLUTION COMMEMORATING 25th ANNIVERSARY OF BHOPAL DISASTER

Legislation Tonight Also Aims to Inventory Toxic Waste In City of Bloomington

Contact: Steve Volan (volans@bloomington.in.gov, 812-333-0900)
Contact: Saurabh Ajmera (sajmera@indiana.edu, 812-361-5776)

When: Wed., Dec. 2, 2009, 7:30 pm

Where: City Hall, 401 N. Morton St, Bloomington, IN

BLOOMINGTON, INDIANA, USA, DEC 2 — The Bloomington Common Council tonight will consider a resolution to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the world’s worst industrial disaster, and use the occasion to examine its own history of dealing with toxic waste.

Thousands of people were killed on Dec. 3, 1984, when a plant run by Union Carbide leaked toxic gas all over Bhopal, a city in India about the size of Indianapolis, Indiana.

Resolution 09-21, sponsored by Councilmember Stephen Volan (D-6th) will declare December 3 as “Bhopal Day” in Bloomington. It will also call for the development of a report inventorying all land in the city of Bloomington that is polluted by toxic waste.

“I thought that the anniversary of Bhopal was an appropriate time to take stock of the toxins in our own backyard,” said Councilmember Volan. “Our most well-known toxin is PCBs, but there are others, and we ought to have a report telling us where they are.”

The discussion of the resolution will include presentations from Councilmember Volan, as well as Saurabh Ajmera, president of the local chapter of Association for India’s Development, who will talk about the tragedy itself, and Chief Faron Livingston of the Bloomington Township Fire Department, who will speak on how the community deals with toxic releases in a catastrophic event like a tornado or earthquake.

“Bhopal was the impetus for the U.S. Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act of 1986,” said Volan. “EPCRA is a crucial component of our public safety system that reduces the possibility of another Bhopal happening here.”

The Common Council will meet at City Hall in Council Chambers at 7:30 pm. More on the proposal can be found at

    http://bloomington.in.gov/media/media/application/pdf/6116.pdf

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