EPA hosts emergency preparedness workshop for El Paso area community organizations
DALLAS (July 26, 2019) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently traveled to San Elizario, Texas, to meet with local community leaders and organizations to discuss emergency preparedness topics, primarily for heat stress and other weather-related issues. EPA regularly meets with environmental justice, civic and faith-based organizations to strengthen community environmental resilience and access to emergency preparedness information.
“Working with our federal, state and local partners to improve emergency preparedness in the El Paso area and throughout the country is a priority for us,” said EPA Acting Regional Administrator David Gray. “Working together, we can develop and share tools to empower community driven solutions to better protect the people we serve.”
During the workshop the National Weather Service, Southwest Center for Pediatric Environmental Health, Red Cross, Community Emergency Response Team, University of Texas at El Paso and El Paso Health Department discussed several emergency preparedness topics, with a focus on household hazards and industrial facilities. Debris and household hazardous waste management can be challenging during natural disasters and can have a significant impact on public safety. Residents can help protect their communities, the environment and emergency response personnel by ensuring items such as propane tanks and paint cans are secured in events that may cause flooding.
Industrial facility operators have certain requirements related to emergency situations. Facility operators have an obligation to operate facilities safely, minimize releases that do occur and report chemical releases in a timely manner.
Addressing complex and continuing environmental problems of concern to overburdened communities is a priority for EPA. Since 1993, EPA has provided advice and recommendations about broad, cross-cutting issues related to environmental justice. As part of EPA’s strategic plan, the agency collaborates with individuals and communities to improve environmental and public health outcomes.
Environmental justice is the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income, with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations and policies.
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About EPA Region 6: https://www.epa.gov/aboutepa/epa-region-6-south-central
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