Transcript for Erin Brockovich Still Battling PG&E
The generations of Americans who built this country from the pilgrims to the pioneers. Tame the wilderness but loved and respected it. We -- rightly proud of the beauty and bounty of our land in the... See More
The generations of Americans who built this country from the pilgrims to the pioneers. Tame the wilderness but loved and respected it. We -- rightly proud of the beauty and bounty of our land in the fact that we can raise our families and healthy and safe environments and look forward to seeing our grandkids did the same. But the -- you're about to meet believes we can't take all this for granted she's. Fighting to clean up. The American dream. Hinckley California. Is irrespective of town in the Mojave Desert. Halfway between LA. And nowhere. It's dusty and pot. But it's home -- generations of folks but who Hinckley represents something. Something special about the American spirit. Something captured in the film the one Julia Roberts and Oscar playing Erin Brockovich. My name is and I brought some information today it's about a film that pulled together to defend the community they cherish -- led by Brockovich. Bold and -- What -- you think you can just won't and then Brian there. -- we need. -- -- -- -- This -- just gotta stop we met the real Erin Brockovich fifteen years ago reporting on the discontent in Hinckley and another small town called cattlemen. PG began using the accident chromium in those days Brockovich was a file clerk. Who found herself piecing together the story of people like -- who are sick and scared we've lost three -- four uncles. And it's. Time. And they were so many New York. Brockovich ended up helping them make the case against their neighbor the giant utility Pacific gas and electric. Who they claim to poison their water supply with a chemical Californian now recognizes as a carcinogen. Chromium six and covered -- up for decades. What the people who live around here didn't know is that the water they would drink few weeks after our story aired PG Younis saddled with the -- residents. For 333. Million dollars. The largest such direct action lawsuit in history -- the company never acknowledged making anyone's -- I. -- -- -- become a passionate advocate good idea that one of the most basic promises of the American dream. -- it with a home raising kids and healthy and safe place. That's saying they can manage. The difference well be Yale she's become an alarmist rattled -- -- Of Sophia -- Now she says people email her by the tens of thousands -- is. -- -- to tell about what they Specter contamination issues all across America. Each one of these Green dots is a person reporting cancer neighbor. She's plotted 17100. Such sites on the map she says she's now refining it with Google I believe that we had a huge problem. With the water in America she says people come to her because they don't nowhere else to go nobody really knows what we're going. You can. She people like this all over the country from places -- Carson California. To Duncan Oklahoma. Frequently tangling with corporate giants Aaron. After your -- yet but ironically. The place it occupies much of Brockovich is time these days. Is the women -- famous Franklin. Well we don't back here I don't know business. Certain facts west us we were shocked to discover all these years later it never got fixed. In fact the area of the contamination has grown according to the local water board. I mean it's gone he's just -- Norris it's gone south Brockovich is working with -- law firm of Girardi being keys on Hinckley and a wide range of other pollution cases. Their environmental investigators Bob -- -- fee. And Brockovich -- -- he's doing their phone water test in which they say shows -- pollution zone far beyond the PG any math. He says PG -- efforts at clean -- have fallen short into custody don't know how to fix because they don't have the will fix. The world to fixes what they needed is a need to go back to the source extracted and removed from the environments. I guess we all assume 333 million dollars later -- that was that -- I don't really thought that there was a victory. And then we have made the difference. And to be here today and see that happening again I can't sit here and tell you there's benefit to. -- has it. -- -- -- Consider the case of Roberta walker. High in the movie version she was Donna -- whose family have been devastated by disease. It's it's just got to be different than. Than what's in our water -- catharsis okay the guys from from PG NE -- they sat. -- kitchen and in and told me that it was it was fun. -- -- As part of the settlement PG and he bought our house and it's contaminated well. With the money -- built a new house for miles down the road outside the original contamination zone. I've built a house. Got my my dream house. But late last year of cruel twist according to the water board the so called plume of contaminated ground water was spreading. That -- had -- it was heading my direction and I couldn't believe it. This is the sort of the outline of the -- as it's been described this is decibels he -- executive in charge of the cleanup in Hinckley we sat down with him last week. So do you believe it. That PG and his actions -- actually cause health. Health problems for people who claim no no one -- Hinckley is drinking water that doesn't -- -- the state water quality standard but we certainly have an environmental. A -- water cleanup issues to -- US so yes or no. People are sick because the water -- -- I am not a medical professional so as I said earlier I can't. Draw a direct link between people being sick and water they were drinking our commitment is to stay there and do the right thing and and get it done get it done right. Which such words -- a little comfort to Roberta walker who says she's heard it all before from PG&E. You've had the waters tested appear right now -- tested at one point nine PG -- would say that's a safe level yes. But you don't -- If it's -- -- Acadia. A pinch of arsenic. And say -- this isn't going to kill you then it's not gonna kill you right now. But if you take this pinch every single day -- it's gonna have an effect on your house OK so here's our bottled water -- Walker gets bottled water from PG -- as -- nearly 250 households within a mile of the non pollution zone. So does a local school even though he genie says they're tested at a safe level. Why repeat to me just go in and clean and not one -- -- -- talk about sex. What I I understand that people are questioned why it's taken so long and -- frankly I'd like to see things moving more quickly myself we have had to go through an exhaustive. Process. To get to a point where we've been -- recently to submit a proposal with a solution to conduct the cleanup and we want to move expeditiously once it's approved. To implement it I'm confused because one of your employees at the last water board meeting it was going to take another forty to fifty years. -- -- -- -- You do appreciate that we -- so it will then move expeditiously that there's a lot of raised eyebrows and -- Clinton. Well again I I understand the concern room why's it taken so long amber about the was just defeated in the movie came out. But now she has a family. And problems of her -- We were kinda nice whats going on -- -- and they -- I don't know your waters finds you have nothing to worry about it won't Tuesday Spock. He feels betrayed by. -- want to buy your property before our family got sick. PG -- says their purchase program has recently expanded to accommodate people like amber who are scared. But amber says she's still worried -- daughter has nose -- just like she did growing up in -- Good -- and her son -- rashes and has diabetes. Amber tells us she had a miscarriage and her -- and her ovaries problems she attributes to the water it's too late for us. -- are working to clean the water but. It's too late for my family and for instance. There's a very fundamental basic value system. That I think America was built upon and that's mutual respect. Honor. Integrity. Concern for how -- environments. And the right to clean water and we have moved. Away from it. There are going to be a lot of people who listen to you and today we need jobs. Don't start battering down business if you do this year than -- hurt this country even more. Of course we need jobs. There's an opportunity here to create jobs in science. And technology. In developing new ways to dispose of our waste you plant -- people to work. That's bringing back.
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