Environmental Risk Monitor

Environmental Risk Monitor

Environmental Issues That Matter: News, Commentary & Analysis

HANDLING EBOLA-CONTAMINATED WASTE: GUIDANCE FOR HOSPITALS AND HAULERS

Posted in Ebola, Uncategorized, Waste Cleanup

The Waste

Ebola is a messy disease. Patient care, even in hospital isolation, produces large quantities of contaminated waste … linens, towels, gowns, masks, gloves and sharps … that many hospitals are not equipped to dispose on site. In non-hospital settings, symptomatic patients contaminate virtually everything they contact including porous materials, such as furniture and carpets, which cannot be decontaminated.

Medical authorities worry about the public health threat posed by storage of Ebola-contaminated waste; homeland security authorities worry about its theft and use by terrorists. Issues of liability and public relations are prominent concerns for all entities in the service chain. Best practices and common sense require prompt removal of accumulated waste to incineration or autoclave facilities. Continue Reading

Constitutional Environmental Rights

Posted in Act 13, Clean Environment, Environmental Rights Amendment, Pennsylvania, Uncategorized

On December 19, 2013 the Pennsylvania Supreme Court issued its long awaited decision in Robinson Twp. v. Commonwealth,83 A.3d 901 (Pa. 2013).  The principle question before the Court was the constitutionality of various provisions of Act 13, the Corbett administration’s signature 2012 legislation that rewrote Pennsylvania’s oil & gas law.  Immediately upon Act 13’s passage, various Pennsylvania townships and citizens filed suit challenging the constitutionality of, among others, the provisions of Act 13 that completely superseded all local zoning and land use ordinances with respect to oil and gas operations. Continue Reading