What We're Reading: California Sues Juul; Native American Disparities; Chemical Plant in Louisiana Draws Concern

California is suing Juul Labs for their role in the youth vaping crisis; a lack of clean water and plumbing was shown to disproportionately affect Native Americans; a chemical plant is passing the permit process in a Louisiana area already dubbed “cancer alley.”

California Sues Juul for Role in the Youth Vaping Crisis

The state of California filed a lawsuit against the e-cigarette manufacturer Juul Labs alleging the company of engaging in a “systematic” and “wildly successful” campaign to attract teenagers to its nicotine devices, according to Reuters. The move draws on internal correspondence showing Juul did little to prevent sales to underage customers, with additional evidence claiming that the company used a flawed age-verification process for online sales. The lawsuit is seeking monetary damages based on violations of state laws such as false advertising and unfair competition.

Lack of Clean Water for Native Americans

A report released Monday called “Closing the Water Access Gap in the United States,” showed that more than 2 million Americans live without clean water, with Native Americans being more likely to have trouble accessing water than any other group. NPR reports that for Native American Darlene Yazzie, the closest water station is 9 miles away and the price to fill her 2 gallon barrels is set to rise next month. The report detailed that 58 out of every 1000 Native American households lack plumbing, compared with 3 out of 1000 white households.

New Chemical Plant in Louisiana’s “Cancer Alley” Draws Concern

Taiwanese plastics company Formosa seems likely to be granted a permit to build a billion-dollar plastics plant in 1 of the most toxic areas of the United States, Louisiana’s so-called “cancer alley”; its proposed emissions are being cited as potentially tripling the levels of cancer-causing chemicals in the air, according to ProPublica. The local community, in the area of the Mississippi River between Baton Rouge and New Orleans, have voiced their objection to the potential move as pollution levels are already dangerously high. Despite these concerns, Formosa permits have been passing in Louisiana’s review process, ProPublica said.

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