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Coalition fighting against Genesee Township asphalt plant says the fight isn’t over

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Environmentalists fighting back to stop construction of asphalt plant

FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - (11/16/2021) - Ajax Materials got the green light to build an asphalt plant in Genesee Township.

Less than 24-hours later, a group of environmental activists are taking action and calling on government agencies across the state to stop the construction.

Environmental activists say there is a 90 day window to appeal a decision to allow an asphalt plant to be built in Genesee Township, along the Flint border, but with the work continuing, activists say the time to push back is right now.

“This isn’t a defeat for the citizens of Flint. We’re just getting started,” Anthony Paciorek said.

Paciorek is an environmental justice organizer with Michigan United and supporting Environmental Transformation Movement of Flint, a coalition working to stop Ajax from building its asphalt plant because of environmental injustice.

“That neighborhood that is right across the street is a minority community, predominantly African American, and is one of our areas for low-income housing,” Paciorek said.

Now, they have 90 days to really get the word out that building a new plant puts people there at risk of developing health problems because of poor air quality.

“Three months to have the governor, and EGLE, and the EPA, and Ajax know of our discomfort and displeasure with this agreement,” Paciorek said.

Paciorek and the coalition’s Executive Director Mona Munroe-Younis are now asking Flint City Council to help out, asking council to sign a reaffirmation letter against the permit to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and asking the EPA to take action by pausing this process for a month until a cumulative impact analysis is done to make a more educated decision.

“We got three months to see, and our coalition has already done the unprecedented. Dare us to it again; we’ll do it again,” Paciorek said.

During Monday night’s Flint City Council meeting, they agreed to get involved by starting a committee to address this problem.

To read the full press release from the Environmental Transformation Movement of Flint, click here.

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