Chevron is certainly not a good neighbor. Consider that Chevron is the single largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in California and a high priority violator of the Clean Air Act since at least 2006. A 2008 Brown University toxic exposure study concluded that the air inside the homes of Richmond residents is more toxic than outside due to harmful pollutants from the refinery, which can cause respiratory diseases. In fact, Richmond had the third highest number of deaths from cancer between 2003 and 2007 of any city in Contra Costa County. In addition, an October 2010 County Asthma Profile found that County residents, as compared to all Californians, are hospitalized for asthma at higher rates; have higher death rates due to asthma, particularly among adults ages 65 and older; and have higher rates of visits to the emergency doctor, particularly for children aged 0 to 4 years. Richmond has reasons to be concerned.
Ralph E. Stone
Filed under: Letters to the Editor