Environmental Groups to Appeal on Central California Landfill

McClatchy Newspapers

FRESNO, Calif. — Environmental activists fighting a hazardous waste dump near Kettleman City, Calif. – which has been hit by a rash of birth defects – announced Thursday they will appeal an adverse ruling in a lawsuit over Kings County’s approval of the landfill’s expansion.

Kings County officials would have no comment on the appeal until attorneys see the legal documents, said Deb West, assistant county administrative officer.

In January, Kings County Superior Court Judge Stephen Barnes ruled that the county followed state environmental laws when it approved an application for Waste Management Inc. to expand its Kettleman Hills hazardous waste landfill – the largest such landfill in the West.

El Pueblo Para El Aire y Agua Limpio/People for Clean Air and Water, based in Kettleman City, and Greenaction for Health and Environmental Justice, based in San Francisco, sued the county over the county’s approval of the expansion. The groups are being represented in the appeal by California Rural Legal Assistance and the Committee for Race, Poverty and the Environment, which has offices in San Francisco and Delano, Calif.

The landfill has long been the focus of criticism by environmentalists and some residents who believe it might have caused 11 unexplained birth defects from 2007 to March 2010.

Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/03/17/2120921/environmental-groups-to-appeal.html#ixzz1GxuBHNAa

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