Groups drop protest against Formosa's wastewater permit

Formosa Plastics Corporation at sunset.

A group announced Wednesday its creation and invited the public to join it in preserving and protecting the natural resources of the Lavaca Bay estuarine system and its tributaries.

The group, known as the Lavaca Bay Foundation, is a nonprofit and bills itself as the only organization with the sole purpose of enhancing the protecting the system and also vowed to inform the public about it, according to a news release.

Dr. Paul Bunnell, a hospitalist for Memorial Medical Center in Port Lavaca, is the foundation’s president; Raymond Butler, a professional engineer, is secretary; and Janet Weaver, who teaches at both the Our Lady of the Gulf Catholic School and Victoria College, is the vice president and secretary.

They’ll next meet in September.

The public and industry can participate in the foundation’s activities and further its mission by becoming a supporter.

For more information, go to, email or send mail to P.B. Box 498, Port Lavaca, TX 77979.

In 1994, the Environmental Protection Agency designated part of Lavaca Bay as a “superfund site.”

This means it is among about 1,000 of the most contaminated sites in the U.S. It was contaminated by Alcoa, which discharged mercury there decades ago.

The average mercury concentration in red drum there remains twice what state health officials consider safe to eat over a sustained period, and other companies, such as Formosa, have moved in, obtaining permits through the state of Texas to discharge wastewater into the bay.

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