June 01, 2006

Andra Popa

Earth Island Institute, Berkeley, CA

Because I was awarded a PILP stipend, I was provided the opportunity to work on a Pro Bono basis with the Earth Island Institute on a Safe Food and Fertilizers project. The main goal of this project was to create a legal justification record for challenging a proposed “toxic recycling” bill. The bill, if passed, would officially recognize and allow the chemical industry to continue to label chemical byproduct industrial waste (meant to be disposed of according to environmental safety standards) as recycled product that is then sold to farmers as “recycled fertilizer.” This industry practice has been linked to increased incidence of cancer as farmers across the nation are using this “fertilizer” directly on cropland whose produce yield is sold to consumers. My responsibilities included legal research and analysis of the Congressional Record, legislative history, and relevant case law concerning the issue of chemical recycling pursuant to the authority established under the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).