Monday, August 27, 2007

From Rio Grande/TCEQ Watermaster Rubinstein in answer to open records request

Dear Mr. Rubinstein,

The response says that the chemical analyses for the 1996 zinc stack demolition project were made and therefore do exist. Your own reply says that you are responsible and permitted under the law to find existing information. SO, WHERE ARE THE ANALYSES/DATA? The reply from the TCEQ that they can't locate "the specific analyses" is not answering my request and the excuse that it is too difficult to look is pathetic when this zinc stack demolition occurred under a 1996 agreed order (SEP).

We have authenticated written evidence that both the TCEQ and EPA are hiding metals-contamination from Asarco found both in El Paso and Corpus Christ (attached). The TCEQ repeatedly fails to provide any full-analyses (total metal analyses - SIC), any stack samples, any raw data (spectrometer analyses), any location of physical core samples, the analyses of the ENCYCLE loads that the EPA made for the consent decree --- ALL ARE MISSING. This belies all valid scientific laboratory and scientific-academic procedures where such data must be kept on record for legal challenges to patents, for report-interpretations, etc.

This begins to be a tiresome wearisome pattern and in this particular case of the stack demolition, when your own reports describes the analyses of the stack walls -- and this lack of data falls appallingly short. I am copying an OAG contact because I feel that this pattern shows a circumvention of the Open Records Law: the TCEQ does not have to give out the records if they fail to keep the data on file.

Repeatedly the TCEQ insists that there is no evidence of many toxic-wastes (e.g. radioactive material) because they fail to find the reports just mentioned. We do understand that the evidence is MISSING --- the TCEQ is guardian of this data, and as such has failed its responsibility to safeguard the public health.

The TCEQ begs the question that they know all the wastes that contaminated us, without the proper evidence -- does the TCEQ think that El Pasoans are ignorant and dumb? The TCEQ even shows a disregard for the public here by failing to hold the Asarco Air Permit #20345 renewal hearing here, in El Paso (the City has offered to cover the TCEQ's expenses incurred holding the meeting here and not in Austin, TX).
It is becoming increasing clear that there is a huge span of missing samples and full-analyses that would, if provided, let this region know what toxins rained down on us from Asarco El Paso.

I received your summary 7/23/07 of our telephone conversation but did not receive a reply to the concerns listed in that summary.

1 comment:

dave said...

i would like to cite some of this at the march tomorrow. let me know.