Where was he when R.I. got polluted?

Rhode Island's Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse's fervent stance on environmental issues is why he was appointed chairman of the Clean Air and Nuclear Safety Senate Subcommittee. But Whitehouse's perceived reputation as an "environmental champion" is questionable. Just look at R.I.'s Department of Environmental Management's cover-ups of Clean Air and Nuclear Safety violations.

Clean Air; in 2010 a granite strip-mine started operating in the middle of a pristine wetland, ignoring a required "wetland's permit" without penalty. Also, the "wetland" strip-mine emits tons of toxic silica dust from its rock crushers and waste. The deadly "crystalline silica dust" pollutes the air and coats residential homes and forces children to breathe the equivalent of "asbestos dust" 24/7. The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM) minimizes this deadly lung toxin by calling it "fugitive dust."

Nuclear safety; in 1966 United Nuclear opened a U-235 nuclear waste recovery plant in Wood River Junction, R.I. This plant polluted the 300-square-mile Pawcatuck aquifer with radioactive wastewater until it was closed in 1983.

Based on facts, it is obvious that Whitehouse's own state's environmental protection record is disgraceful. Now can anyone believe that Whitehouse is an "environmental champion" when RIDEM cover-ups the annihilation of its own environment?

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