Texas waterways are the fourth most polluted in the nation, according to a new report from Environment Texas. Companies released some 14.6 million pounds of industrial pollutants and toxic chemicals into Texas’ waterways in 2010. Only waterways in Indiana, Virginia, and Nebraska received more industrial pollution.
“Texas’ waterways are a polluter’s paradise right now. Polluters dump 14.6 million pounds of toxic chemicals in Texas’ lakes, rivers, and streams every year,” Luke Metzger, director of Environment Texas, said in a release. “We must turn the tide of toxic pollution by restoring Clean Water Act protections to our waterways.”
Who is the worst offender? According to the report, Sanderson Farms Inc., a chicken company that handles everything from “production” to processing, dumped 1.5 million pounds of pollution—mostly nitrate compounds—into nearby streams.
Environment Texas drew up the report using water discharge data from the Environmental Protection Agency. Metzger pointed out that this report comes out as the Clean Water Act turns forty.
Texas Waterways that Received the Most Industrial Pollution in 2010:
- Houston Ship Channel
- Brazos River
- Cottonwood Branch
- Corpus Christi Inner Harbor
- Tankersley Creek
- Tehuscana Creek
- Corpus Christi Bay
- Cedar Creek
- Neches River
- Industrial Ship Channel