On August 25, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality finalized the adoption of Alternative Language Notice in the public input process for air, water, and waste permits. The new rule will remove historical language barriers and allow more communities to voice their concerns regarding oil, gas, and petrochemical projects in the state.
Additionally, Spanish, Vietnamese, and other dominant language-speaking communities throughout Texas will now have the opportunity to understand and identify the potential hazardous projects entering each community in their own languages.
Migrant communities will have access to plain language summaries as well. In Texas, communities in small rural towns through those in large urban areas will have access to non-technical summaries of projects requesting permits in their area. These populations will also receive proper 30-day notice of harmful projects.
The adoption of Alternative Language Notice is key in creating change in environmental justice communities. It reduces harm and helps these communities toward creating a path of reducing the multigenerational damage created in years prior.