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Plastic Pellets in Lavaca Bay

Okay, folks, here’s a simple riddle:  What’s twice the size of Texas and floating in the ocean?  Answer:  The great Plastic Vortex! Plastic bags, plastic bottles, plastic toys. Plastic plastic!  Sylvia Earle, oceanographer and one of the world’s greatest advocates of the sea, said “Far and away the most abundant, troublesome, persistent, deadly debris in the sea is composed of plastic.” Now sitting down here in Calhoun County, twix the bays and the live oak, you might ask yourself what the heck that’s got to do with us ’cause  out of sight is out of mind. Right?  It’s way out there in the ocean. We don’t actually see that Plastic Vortez.  Well, think again.  We’ve got a giant PVC plant in our midst that’s got a problem with controlling  pvc dust and pvc pellets. Just check out the latest OSHA and EPA inspections at Formosa Plastics.  PVC dust was everywhere.  On the workers, in the storm ditches, and all over the unit. There was so much pvc dust at Formosa a few scant months ago that it ignited a fire. Two workers were injured. Formosa employee bagging PVC resin And it’s not just on site and worrisome to the workers; come high tide you will find plastic pellets easily on the tide line of Lavaca Bay and out on the small islands.  Just check out website.  On their photo section is photos taken during an EPA inspection at Formosa Plastics in June 2010: workers wearing bandanas to keep from breathing the vinyl chloride laced pvc dust and pvc pellets in the storm ditches.  There is also a photo of a beach in Lavaca Bay covered in pvc pellets.  A hint of what is making its way into our bays, estuaries, and the Gulf.  It’s a violation of Formosa’s wastewater permit to have solids escaping into the bay so where’s Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and EPA in all this?  Where oh where? Lavaca Bay Now, folks, just in case there are those of you out there that think we need to be soft on Formosa, cause after all they are providing jobs while creating havoc, just remember that Formosa Plastics Corporation, the flagship company of Taiwan’s Formosa Plastic Group, said Friday (oops, today!) that its unaudited 2010 net profit  was NT$45.96 billion and its unaudited revenue was NT$194.45 billion.  Yep, that’s billion dollars.  This company can well afford to protect its workers and stop the plastic waste from killing the bays. Read the original post on Diane’s new blog,
unreasonablewoman Diane Wilson is the author of An Unreasonable Woman and the forthcoming Diary of an Eco-Outlaw.

What it Takes to Shut Me Up

A woman from the Texas coast discovered civil disobedience was the only way to change things. She put her own boat on the line and inspired others to join her for the sake of Lavaca Bay. By Diane Wilson Editor’s note: Diane Wilson of Seadrift, Texas, is a fourth generation shrimper. In March of 1994, […] Read More..

The Naked Truth of It All…

One of our first actions as Unreasonable Women of the Earth was to support the Bhopal hunger strike. Bhopal, India is the site of the worst environmental disaster in the world. Over 20,000 people have died from the insecticide-like poison that was released from a Union Carbide plant in Bhopal, India, in 1984. In 2002, the survivors of Bhopal began another hunger strike to wrestle justice from the Indian government and also the Union Carbide Corporation. But they fell ill. The Unreasonable Women of the Earth heard about their plight and decided to begin a USA leg of the hunger fast. Read More..

An Open Letter to OSHA

We are the Injured Workers United from Calhoun County, Texas. We are writing this letter in the hope that we can have a meeting with you to express our concern about the Formosa Plastics facility in Point Comfort, Texas. We are former and current workers of Formosa who formed a group in order to support each other through our disabilities, illnesses, financial hard times, and the experience of working under a company that, we believe, has shown, and continues to show, a high disregard for its workers, community, and the environment. Read More..

Conquered by Petrochemicals? Taiwan’s Disgrace! Formosa Plastics Wins Black Planet Award!

As people come and go from the Taipei City bus stop in front of the Formosa Plastics Group Headquarters and Changgeng Memorial Hospital on Dunhua North Road, they can't help but note the words of an advertisement: "A million bus trips doesn’t add up to a single smokestack." A large bright red Chinese character for "shame" stands out against a dark gray background portraying the smokestacks of Taiwan's Sixth Naphtha Cracker Plant. The forlorn expressions of three Yunlin County children cry out "Give us back our clean soil, air, and water." This bus-side advertisement was created and sponsored by environmental groups to mark Formosa Plastics Group’s winning of the International Black Planet Award. But on the day before the award ceremony, the word for “shame” was ripped out from one of the ads and while the bus company said “it wasn’t us” Formosa is threatening to sue the advertising agent. With everyone wondering who has the incentive to interfere with the right to speak the truth, environmental groups are undeterred, launching an international union to uncover the truth about the FPG ( and choosing 19 May, "Y. C. Wang Day", to hold the award ceremony. Read More..

CODEPINK Brings Public Outrage to BP in Houston Exposes the Naked Truth Behind “Drill Baby Drill”

Naked, dripping with oil and dragging nets full of dead fish, CODEPINK activists will expose the atrocities of BP's latest and greatest drilling disaster on the Gulf Coast. Read More..