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Ribbon Cutting Ceremony to Launch Availability of Air Monitoring Results On Line

Louisiana Bucket Brigade
2831 Marais, Suite 1, New Orleans, La 70117
504/914-3164 fax: 504/324-0215

Media Advisory
For Release on Thursday, April 21, 2005

For More information Contact:
Anne Rolfes, LA Bucket Brigade, (504) 914 3164
Ken Ford, St. Bernard Citizens for Environmental Quality, (504) 427 - 5347

Ribbon Cutting Ceremony to Launch Availability
of Air Monitoring Results On Line
Event Co Hosted by State Representative Ken Odinet

Citizen Air Sampling Technology Outpaces Industry and State Regulators

Who: State Representative Ken Odinet, the St. Bernard Citizens for Environmental Quality and the Louisiana Bucket Brigade are hosting a ribbon cutting event for the launch of air monitoring results on line. This will be the first time in the history of Louisiana that people will be able to go on line to find out what toxic chemicals are in their air. It represents a landmark event for protection of public health and the environment as well as an opportunity for government and industry.

The St. Bernard Citizens for Environmental Quality and the Louisiana Bucket Brigade are operating a Cerex air quality monitor in Chalmette across the street from ExxonMobil. The monitor detects for toxic chemicals 24 hours a day, seven days a week. It is cutting edge technology that enables community members to know what chemicals are in their neighborhood. The people in St. Bernard Parish are leading the state and nation in using this equipment and monitoring the air.

Officials from the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Environmental Quality, the Catholic Diocese of New Orleans and St. Bernard Parish, and the St. Bernard Parish government have been invited to attend the event.

When: The Ribbon Cutting Ceremony is Thursday, April 21st at 10 AM.

Media briefings to facilitate a closer look at the technology are available in advance of the event. To schedule a briefing please call Anne Rolfes at (504) 914 3164.

Where: 12 Carroll Drive, Chalmette, Louisiana

Why: Despite the millions of pounds of carcinogens and toxics that industry releases into the air, government and industry are not taking the steps necessary to protect the public from these emissions. Though the Department of Environmental Quality recently installed an air monitor across the street from ExxonMobil, it only takes a reading every six days. The technology exists to understand what we are breathing 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and to protect industry workers and the community from these emissions. The citizens of St. Bernard Parish and the Louisiana Bucket Brigade are taking matters into their own hands to demonstrate that it is possible to protect health.

Use of this technology benefits everyone, from refinery workers and homeland security officials to community members and emergency workers. The Cerex can help refinery managers detect a problem at the plant while it is still small enough to solve. Air monitoring can help first responders those responsible for responding to a spill or a release to understand what exactly was released and how to protect themselves and the community.

Use of the air monitors is a money saving device for refinery management. Managers should work to prevent releases to that they can keep their product in the plant and sell it at a profit instead of wasting it by dumping the chemicals on the community. During this time of record profits for the oil industry, now is the time to take measures and install monitors that will benefit everyone.

© Chalmette Air Monitoring Project (CHAMP)
Copyright 2005-2006