Lautenberg introduces bills for water and chemical plant safety

    Amid national concerns of fracking and radiation, U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg has introduced two bills that would reduce risks to those living near chemical and water treatment facilities.

    The New Jersey Democrat introduced today the Secure Water Facilities Act and Secure Chemical Facilities Act. Both would require plants to assess their vulnerabilities and would require the highest-risk facilities to use Inherently Safer Technology to increase public safety.

    The bills would also:

    Protect sensitive security information from disclosure, while ensuring information sharing between state and local governments, first-responders, and workers. 
    Allow communities to have a role in ensuring local facilities comply with these regulations.
    Authorize grants to help defray the cost of assessing vulnerabilities, developing security and response plans, and implementing safer measures.

    Lautenberg says both bills have been endorsed by 100 environmental, health and labor groups.

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