Sierra Club's CSI: El Paso
Located five minutes from downtown El Paso, and a stone's throw from heavily populated neighborhoods in Juárez, Mexico, the Asarco smelter has been a binational polluter for a century. In 2005, the Sierra Club hired El Paso resident and environmental engineer Mariana Chew as an organizer. She and other Club members participated in Asarco's permit-renewal hearing last year and have organized workshops and marches, trying to hold the company accountable for its environmental and public-health abuses. In January, a Club-commissioned study found high levels of lead and arsenic in the soil around the smelter and linked the toxic substances' molecular "fingerprint" to Asarco.
ON THE WEB For more, go to sierraclub.org/beyondtheborders.