PCRM had a busy year working to prevent Covance Laboratories, a contract animal-testing company, from building a huge facility in Chandler, Ariz. Covance, which is paid to test cosmetic ingredients, food additives, pesticides, and drugs on monkeys, dogs, rats, and other animals, has a history of documented animal cruelty and violations of the Animal Welfare Act.
PCRM recently learned that Covance met with Maricopa County air quality officials in early November to seek a permit for an incinerator for its proposed facility in Chandler. In response, PCRM released a report detailing the potential health hazards posed to Chandler residents by this incinerator.
The incinerator would likely be used to destroy thousands of toxic animal carcasses each year. Studies suggest that this type of incinerator may be more likely than ordinary crematories to emit dangerous substances such as lead and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons. In addition, Covance’s incinerator would likely burn animal carcasses containing concentrated levels of industrial chemicals, insecticides, pesticides, and experimental drugs, with unpredictable consequences to public health.
According to an article in The Arizona Republic, Covance may pay extra to speed up the process to obtain a permit, which usually takes between nine and 14 months. The county welcomes public comment regarding incinerator permit applications 30 days after a company has filed its initial paperwork to obtain one.
Covance originally planned to build on a parcel of land that would have to be rezoned for industrial use. This rezoning process would have required a city council vote, and if the council approved the rezoning, there would have been more than enough support from Chandler residents to force a referendum on the ballot. So Covance relocated the proposed facility to land that was already properly zoned in order to avoid citizen input.
|ACTION ALERT: What You Can Do
Please write to the Chandler City Council and let council members know you are worried about Covance’s history of animal abuse and the public health dangers a facility and incinerator would pose to the citizens of Chandler.
Office of the Mayor and City Council
Mail Stop 603
P.O. Box 4008
Chandler, AZ 85244-4008
Please write Food and Drug Administration acting Commissioner Andrew C. von Eschenbach, M.D., and ask him to issue regulations requiring pharmaceutical companies to develop alternatives to animal testing.
Andrew C. von Eschenbach, M.D., Acting Commissioner
Food and Drug Administration
5600 Fishers Lane
Rockville, MD 20857