The Portland-based manufacturing firm Precision Castparts Corporation is the number one toxic air polluter in the country in a new ranking released by the University of Massachusetts.
Precision Castparts manufactures cast metal parts for airplanes, cars and industrial machinery at 150 plants worldwide. Several of those facilities are in Oregon. Economics professor Michael Ash compiled the list of the top 100 toxic air polluters for the University of Massachusetts. He says the rankings are based on data collected by the Environmental Protection Agency. They account for the volume and toxicity of pollution at all of a company's facilities as well as the health risk to people nearby.
Ash: "What accounts for virtually all of Precision Castparts score is several facilities releases of several heavy metals: Chromium, cobalt and nickel."
Ash says all of the emissions are very likely legal and permitted by the EPA. Precision Castparts says it is evaluating the results of the ranking.
Copyright 2013 Oregon Public Broadcasting