For more information and to arrange interviews, contact:
Monique Harden, AEHR, 504-919-4590 (cell)
Nathalie Walker, AEHR, 504-453-6791 (cell)
Louisiana Community Group Confronts Conoco Phillips Board of Directors on Record of Environmental Racism and Human Rights Abuses
May 14, 2008 (Houston, TX) . . . Today residents of the historic African American community of Mossville, Louisiana will attend the Conoco Phillips annual shareholders meeting, where they will confront the Board of Directors on environmental racism and human rights abuses they suffer as a result of refinery hazardous operations.
Mossville residents, organized as Mossville Environmental Action Now!, Advocates for Environmental Human Rights, and the Subra Company have prepared the report, “Conoco Phillips: What It Passes on to the People of Louisiana,” which is based on governmental records that show the Conoco Phillips Lake Charles refinery in Mossville has the worst accident record of all industrial facilities in the area, and releases extremely toxic chemicals that have poisoned fish and have been detected by a federal governmental agency in Mossville homes and the fruits grown by residents. The groups will be supporting the “Community Accountability” shareholder resolution that seeks broad changes in business practices that harm people, who are majority African American living near Conoco Phillips facilities.
“We love our community of Mossville, and we are going to confront the Conoco Phillips Board of Directors because they are hurting our people,” said Edgar Mouton, Jr., President of Mossville Environmental Action Now! and life-long resident of Mossville. “Our report shows what we know and feel every day: Conoco Phillips is threatening the survival of our community,” he said.
The groups’ report is based on the environmental reports that Conoco Phillips has submitted to governmental agencies, but hides from investors and customers, which show that the Conoco Phillips refinery in Mossville:
- has the highest number of accidents in the area that released nearly 56 million pounds of sulfur dioxide;
- releases dioxin compounds that have been detected by the US Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry in the homes of Mossville residents and the foods they eat; and
- has switched to dirtier energy sources that increase greenhouse gas emissions in Mossville, which is prone to hurricanes entering the Gulf of Mexico, and where residents are still rebuilding after Hurricane Rita struck in September 2005.
“Conoco Phillips advertisements say that the company is defined by what it passes on to the next generation. However, before an expecting Mossville mother and father can name their child, Conoco Phillips refinery may have already released toxins that have entered their child’s body,” said Monique Harden, Co-Director & Attorney of Advocates for Environmental Human Rights. “The Board of Directors can no longer hide their heads in the sand. Our report and the “Community Accountability “shareholder resolution gives investors the opportunity to defend the human rights of African Americans harmed by Conoco Phillips,” she said.
(1) “Conoco Phillips: What It Passes on to the People of Mossville, Louisiana”
(2) “Community Accountability” Shareholder Resolution
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