By Emily Greenhalgh
PBN Web Editor
(Updated, 3:30 p.m.)
AMHERST, Mass. – Textron Inc. – the Providence-based company that includes Bell Helicopter and Cessna Aircraft – was removed from the 4th Toxic 100 Air Polluters list released by the Political Economy Research Institute at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
Originally, PERI researchers ranked Textron second on its list of the top corporate air polluters in the United States, released Aug. 15.
When the UMass list was released, Textron spokesman David Sylvestre told Providence Business News that the list was based on 2007 emissions data and “not an accurate reflection of the company’s environmental impact.”
Using updated data, Textron is no longer ranked among the Toxic 100. On the revised list, PERI states: “The EPA has confirmed that Textron Inc., previously ranked at number two among the Toxic 100, has submitted data revising its 2007 [toxics release inventory] reporting. Based on the revision, Textron is no longer ranked among the Toxic 100. The next edition of the Toxic 100 will reflect the most current information from the EPA.”
No other changes were made to the Toxic 100 list.
“We appreciate that PERI has quickly revised the report, and that Textron is no longer included in the Toxic 100 rankings,” said Sylvestre, who added that the error was based on incorrect data for Cessna Aircraft’s 2006 through 2008 emissions in Wichita, Kan.
Michael Ash, PERI researcher and professor of economics and public policy at UMass Amherst said “We look at this as a moderate success, where we were able to alert the company to an error in reporting. Fortunately, it was in the positive direction.”
“Textron has an outstanding record of environmental compliance and has demonstrated a strong commitment to protecting the environment and contributing positively to the communities where we operate,” said Sylvestre.
According to PERI’s revised list, the five worst air polluters in the U.S. were the Bayer Group, General Electric Co., Precision Castparts, Koch Industries and SPX Corp., respectively.
To see the revised list, visit: www.peri.umass.edu/toxic100.