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A story in three parts

For Earth Day, I want to tell you about a long struggle for accountability and a movement to once again make polluters pay for the damage they've done.

Polluters were once required to help pay for the messes they made. Big Oil companies, chemical manufacturers, and other industrial polluters paid into our federal Superfund program to clean up hazardous waste sites. But then, more than 25 years ago, Republicans let this obligation expire – letting polluters off the hook.

They turned "Make a mess? Clean it up," into "Make a mess!"

It makes too much sense. For decades now, Republican politicians have dismissed climate change, had their campaigns funded by dirty corporations, and have worked tirelessly to block efforts to protect our environment.

Stay with me, because this is the part of the story where things change for the better.

After our efforts to take back Congress and the White House in 2020, voters across America have made it very clear that holding polluters accountable is critical. That's why I've introduced my Superfund Reinvestment Act in the House, my plan to return to the days of polluters paying to fix their messes.

For 25 Years, Taxpayers Picked Up Polluters’ Superfund Bill. That May Finally Change.

The EPA has estimated that a quarter of all people living in America are within only four miles of a hazardous waste site. Four miles!

Immediate, decisive action is so important to this problem. Each day we wait is another day where children – especially in communities of color – are growing up with increased exposure to harsh chemicals because they are adjacent to waste sites.

The one thing this story is missing, however, is its ending. And that's where you come in.

While the Superfund Reinvestment Act could potentially raise billions of dollars to finally mitigate these hazardous waste sites, you can bet that Republicans and their polluter friends are going to fight us every step of the way.

That's why I look forward to bringing you more details about our efforts over the coming weeks and months. Because public pressure for accountability (and a better future for our families) is a big part of how we will get this done.

Stay tuned. Happy Earth Day. And, as always, courage.


Posted on April 22, 2021.