2002 CPEO Military List Archive

From: Steve@miltoxproj.org
Date: 19 Feb 2002 14:54:36 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] TAKE ACTION 1 of 2
Hello all:

Apologies for cross postings.

This is the first of two emails requesting action to oppose a new 
Pentagon push for even more exemptions from environmental laws and 
demand that communities and states be part of the debate about these 
issues in Washington.

This email is the action alert, and the next one provides more 
background on the issue.  Please take a look and take action on this as 
soon as possible.


Steve Taylor
National Organizer
Military Toxics Project
(207) 783-5091 (phone)
(207) 783-5096 (fax)
P.O. Box 558
Lewiston, ME  04243-0558

The Military Readiness Subcommittee of the House Armed Services 
Committee is taking aim at these laws in a hearing on March 14:

  a.. RCRA (Resource Conservation and Recovery Act) 
  b.. CERCLA (Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and 
Liability Act 
  c.. Clean Water Act 
  d.. Clean Air Act 
  e.. Endangered Species Act 
  f.. Marine Mammal Protection Act 
  g.. Noise Act 
  h.. Migratory Bird Treaty Act 
  i.. Coastal Zone Management Act 
  j.. Federal wilderness acts
Only military and federal officials are being allowed to testify at the 
~ Take Action ~  Contact your Representative today to demand that 
communities and states be allowed to tell our side of the story!

The Military Readiness Subcommittee of the House Armed Services 
Committee will hold a hearing March 14 about the impact of environmental 
laws and urban growth on military training and readiness. In reality, 
the hearing is being held to give the Pentagon and its allies in 
Congress an opportunity to push their agenda of gutting the few 
environmental laws that apply to the military without allowing 
communities or states to tell their side of the story. Take action now 
to demand that the hearings include community and state witnesses so 
that Congress can hear all sides of the story.


For at least the past year, the Pentagon has used the buzzword 
"encroachment" to promote their argument that environmental laws that 
protect ecosystems and human health are slowly destroying the military's 
ability to fight. The Pentagon's allies in Congress held three hearings 
in early 2001 to allow military officials to attack environmental laws 
without any opposition. No community leaders, state governments, or 
regulatory officials were allowed to testify at these hearings. Despite 
the fact that the military is already completely or partially exempt 
from most environmental laws, and that the President can grant 
exemptions from most laws at any time for national security reasons, 
certain Committees arranged these hearings to help the Pentagon push its 
agenda of exemptions from the few laws that do protect communities from 
military contamination and pollution.

The Pentagon has been preparing a series of legal and regulatory changes 
to give the military even more exemptions from environmental laws than 
they already have. This process has accelerated under the Bush 
administration and especially since September 11. The Pentagon seems to 
think that the "war" on terrorism can be used as cover to allow them to 
ram through their anti-environmental agenda without full debate or 
significant opposition. The March 14 hearing just announced signals the 
beginning of a push to pass the Pentagon's new proposals for more 

Communities affected by military contamination and pollution must stand 
together to demand that our voices be heard at the hearing on March 14 
and throughout this debate. Please take action immediately to let 
Congress hear your voice.

What's At Stake

Nothing less than the health of ourselves and our families and the 
principle of one law for everyone is at stake. Environmental laws like 
the Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, and Resource Conservation and 
Recovery Act protect military neighbors from dangerous contamination. 
Existing military exemptions already make military neighbors less 
protected than neighbors of private sector facilities. The military is 
exempt from critical parts of the Oil Pollution Act, the Noise Act, and 
the statutes that govern nuclear energy. The Emergency Planning and 
Community Response Act only applies by executive order, which is not 
enforceable by federal agencies or states. EPA cannot enforce military 
compliance with the Clean Water Act. The Comprehensive Environmental 
Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) cannot be applied to 
the military in the same manner as private companies. The Secretary of 
Defense can unilaterally exempt military actions from provisions of the 
Endangered Species Act during the appeal process. There are other 
examples. The point is that the military is already exempt from many 
environmental laws or from enforcement of those laws (making them 

What We Want

The March 14 hearing and all Congressional hearings on this topic must 
include community and state representatives. We want our voices and our 
stories to be heard. We want equal time for community leaders and state 
officials that must confront the human cost of military contamination 
and pollution every day.

Take Action

  a.. Call, fax, or email (or all three!) the majority and minority 
staff for the Military Readiness Subcommittee and ask that community 
leaders and states be allowed to testify on March 14. The fax number is 
(202) 225-7102. Pete Steffes is the majority (Republican) staff at (202) 
225-6288 or <peter.steffes@mail.house.gov> and Dudley Tademy is the 
minority (Democrat) staff at (202) 226-2575 or 
  b.. If you are represented by one of the members of the Military 
Readiness Subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committee (listed 
below), please contact them as soon as possible and ask them to ensure 
that community leaders and state officials are allowed to testify on 
March 14. 
  c.. If you are not represented by one the Subcommittee members, 
contact your Representative and ask them to write to the Subcommittee 
requesting that community leaders and state officials be allowed to 
  You can find out who your Representative and Senators are at 
http://www.visi.com/juan/congress (which provides phone number and email 
for your representatives).

  You may also want to review MTP's Talking Points on this issue (in 
next email).

[ -NOTE FROM THE CPEO MODERATOR- The following is meant to be viewed as 
a chart, but the formatting was lost due to the limits of the medium]

     Member State
      Joel Hefley, Chair
     James Hansen
      Dave Weldon
     Howard McKeon
      Roscoe Bartlett
     J.C. Watts
      Saxby Chambliss
     Van Hilleary
      Walter Jones
     James Gibbons
      Bob Riley, Vice Chair
     Heather Wilson
      Duncan Hunter
      Solomon Ortiz, Ranking Minority Member
     Ciro Rodriguez
      Lane Evans
     Robert Brady
      Robert Underwood
     Baron Hill
      James Maloney
     Susan Davis
      Mike McIntyre
     Richard Larsen

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