Green on Green
By Robert Bateman
A recent article in The Post highlighted an interesting dustup between the Department of Defense and the Environmental Protection Agency.
Apparently the Pentagon is considered the country's biggest polluter, with polluted military sites accounting for 10 percent of Superfund sites. Granted, some of those posts have been abandoned since 1919. But the EPA wants them cleaned up, and the Pentagon is on the hook. Fair enough.
The question is how to make that happen. Deputy Undersecretary of Defense Wayne Arny told a Senate panel last week that some of the EPA's cleanup plans were "excessive" and that the Pentagon wanted to do its own thing. Sen. Barabara Boxer (D-Calif.) countered: "I don't want the EPA making decisions on war strategy, and I don't want you making decisions on environmental cleanup, because you have an interest in the easiest way out."
I'm not a big fan of Boxer. She has said some pretty stupid things with regards to issues of national security and the military. But one must give props when props are due. And in this case, she's right.
Now, of course, it's incumbent upon her and her peers to provide the Pentagon with sufficient funds to actually do that clean-up in accordance with the Superfund efforts. The current allocation of $30 million across 129 sites? Positively pathetic.
In other words, people can't have it both ways. Me, I'm for the clean up. I hope that Congress will be as well, and I expect Sen. Boxer to lead the charge for more reality-based funding.
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Posted by: srv | September 22, 2008 10:49 PM
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