Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Brockovich Still Fighting for Justice

Erin Brockovich is now taking on one of the largest corporations in the world, ExxonMobil. She is now fighting for residents in Brooklyn, New York, who are suffering from kidney and other health problems, attributed to an oil plume in the Greenpoint section of Brooklyn that developed over 50 years ago.

Brockovich claims ExxonMobil carried out a coverup of the spill and could have cleaned it up years ago. Last week, a federal report uncovered the spill, one of the largest in the country. The report found that as much as 30 million gallons might have spilled. The famous Exxon Valdez oil spill back in 189 was 11 million gallons. The report further noted that the leaking toxic vapors might well be leaking into homes, harming people further.

Since 2005, Brockovich has traveled to Brooklyn twice to meet with affected residents. So far, 415 plaintiffs have signed on with one law firm and another 300 have signed with another firm to fight ExxonMobil. Sufferers are facing respiratory problems, asthma, and chronic headaches, in addition to the kidney issues. A cancer cluster also has residents worried, and Brockovich plans to be back this month to continue conversations with residents.

ExxonMobil has admitted just recently that the spill exists but claims several companies are responsible and the problem dates back more than 140 years. Putting blame on others, the company, though, has started some clean up efforts. Like Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E), ExxonMobil also claims the spill does not pose risks. The company retorts the plume is 30 feet below ground and "does not represent health concerns and hazards." Brockovich says time will tell if this the truth, but in the meantime, the company faces four major lawsuits. "They are going to have to do the right thing. This is a big spill," Brockovich claims.

So, we see that Brockovich's efforts as a crusader continue. Learning more about the multitude of cases Brockovich has fought on, what is your evolving impressions of this woman?

Information for this blog comes from the New York Daily News, Sept. 19, 2007. The photo is also from the Daily News and shows Erin meeting with local Greenpoint residents.


Ayssa said...

You know, I find it so inspiring that this woman who doesn't even have a degree in law, changed her entire life with one case. Many people probably thought that she was a "one hit wonder" so to speak with the PG&E case, but the fact that she is still going on to fight for justice today makes her story all the more meanigful.

Alyssa Sharkey said...

I spelt my own name wrong...sorry.


Jenna Lorusso said...

It's amazing to hear that Erin is still working on legal cases. She must have a way with people if so many of them trust her to help them with their legal issues. She also seems to work on the same kind of cases: people are sick and a big company is at fault and is unwilling to take the blame and pay for their mistakes. It's really a shame that big-time companies are more willing to spend years in courts and in legal dispute, wasting time and money (which they can afford to do), instead of admitting what they did and helping the people that are seriously ill.

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