Oh that loveable Dow Chemical. Their extra-ordinary budgeting capabilities for advertisemsent and public relations (see sidebars around Scienceblogs and a glaring visibility in print media over the last year or so) outshines only their extraordinary abilities to deflect environmental responsibliity.
So much so that even many of their shareholders (which technically includes me, since I have a retirement account from them, meager as it may be) are demanding they clean up dioxins downstream from their Midland, MI facilities and they clean up Bhopal.
There are actually four separate things going on in the reent news release:
1) Clean up the Tittabawassee River, says the EPA
2) Clean up the river, says a group of shareholders a month before the EPA came through with their decree
3) Clean up Bhopal, still, again, more, do it this time, 2+ decades later
4) Stop making those most dangerous pesticides in Bhopal while you're at it
The news clip is here:
EPA orders Dow to clean up river: On June 27, US EPA Region 5 notified Dow Chemical Co. that it must "immediately start cleanup of three dioxin-contaminated hot spots downstream of its Midland, Mich., facility on the Tittabawassee River." EPA noted that in late 2006, Dow itself had "identified dioxin hot spots along the first six miles of the Tittabawassee River contaminated with levels up to 87,000 parts per trillion, far in excess of state and federal requirements.... areas...subject to flooding and erosion that could spread the contamination." The order comes on the heels of a May 10 shareholder resolution to clean up the river sponsored by Sisters of Mercy Detroit and the Dow Accountability Network. Two more resolutions called on Dow to clean up Bhopal, India and stop producing some of its most dangerous pesticides.
Here is a link to a *.pdf of the EPA Press Release, of June 27.
Here is the full story, "Dow Chemical Investors Worth $305 Million Challenge Company on Social and Environmental Catastrophes," from CSR Wire: "The Newsire of Corporate Social Repsonsibility." Milton Friedman be damned, I suppose.