Chemical Principles

Friday, April 17, 2009


In August 2008 a chemical plant in West Virginia exploded, killing two employees and raising fears of a Bhopal-like toxic chemical leak. A federal investigation into what happened is being conducted but the results might not see the light of day because the chemical company has invoked a terrorism related law to silence what it says is “sensitive security information.’ This leaves the Fed muzzled by its own law. Chemical Safety and Hazard Review Board chairman John Bresland explains the impact on the public’s right to know.

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Comments [4]

derek monroe

Mr Johnson, good point. In the defense of OTM, sometimes the story being worked on take weeks if not months so it's quite possible it was already finished before the Charlston Gazette's story.

Apr. 21 2009 04:07 PM
Clint Johnson from Portland Oregon

I was looking for more information on this incident, when I found this article (April 3rd) from the Charleston Gazette, which stated that the Coast Guard has already cleared the information.

I'm a big fan of "On the Media", but in this case I must criticize OTM for leaving out this important fact. Without mentioning the clearance of the report by the coast guard, the story becomes more inflammatory than it may merit.

Apr. 21 2009 02:34 PM
derek monroe from chicago,il

Hello, did anybody say "corporate fascism?"
I think if the history serves me right we are heading to the point of what DUCE once quoted as "IL CORPORATISMO>" I think that the idea of change by our current bendable political action figure is not as appealing as it once was. However one has to give it to the corporate lawyers for their imagination and wit, W.Virginia and the coast guard (?). This one is really something for the books. Another nugget would be a photo right around the conflict between Georgia and Russia showing US Coast Guard cutter delivering supplies to the Georgians. Naturally, it only appeared in foreign press so it wouldn't rise uncomfortable questions.
Something about Union Carbide Bhopal disaster as it probably happened on a different planet?. This year is the 25th anniversary and it looks like nobody would be making any movies on the subject or other materials. As of 2007 when I visited India last time, many people still have not been paid any damages or compensated for their loss despite Indian federal and state govts. collecting hundreds of millions from variety of corporate protagonists. Anyone to pick up the scoop?

Apr. 19 2009 02:40 PM
Chris Gray from New Haven, CT

Reminds me of the trouble the Vancouver coroner in DaVinci's Inquest had in calling attention to hazardous chemicals traveling on rail lines through populated areas and that was set in Canada in the '90s, without the wonderful old Patriot Act putting muzzles on everyone in officialdom, here!

Which reminds, also, that ABC's Life on Mars was a program that redeemed itself by the finale. So, NBC's Life wasn't the only show that caught my attention this year.

(Two corporate plugs, oh my!)

Apr. 19 2009 01:38 AM

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