Even before Hurricane Maria struck the island nearly six months ago, the majority of Puerto Rico’s residents lived with water that violated health standards set by the U.S. law. Since the storm, residents say the situation has only gotten worse. Among the sources of potential water contamination are mountains of coal ash generated by a coal-fired power plant owned by a private company called AES. For years, residents have demanded the company stop dumping toxic coal ash into their community, saying the waste is poisonous to their health and the environment. DN! speaks with Mekela Panditharatne, a lawyer with the Natural Resources Defense Council who just returned from the island and wrote an op-ed in The Washington Post headlined ”FEMA says most of Puerto Rico has potable water. That can’t be true.”
Sign up for Our Newsletter
Get updates about the policies and topics that matter the most to you. Progressive news directly to your email.