ACC president chides Congress for security planning

America needs a comprehensive, federal plan to secure the critical chemical infrastructure that every sector of the economy relies on, said Jack Gerard, American Chemistry Council president and chief executive officer.

"However, some in Congress have demanded extraneous environmental provisions in a security bill," Gerard said in a statement December 19 in response to the introduction in the Senate of long-awaited chemical facility security legislation. "In the face of terrorism, playing politics with the lives of the hundreds of thousands of employees, their neighbors, and our nation's critical infrastructure is inexcusable. Meaningful security legislation is overdue--it's time for Congress to put aside politics and do its job."

He added that four years is too long to wait following the terrorist attacks of 9/11 for Congress to help safeguard the chemical industry.

"We have testified before Congress in favor of tough federal legislation to ensure that all companies across America that make or handle chemicals are doing everything feasible to counter terrorism," he said. "Security experts know that chemical security is a national concern that requires a national solution, including perimeter protection, checkpoints, cyber security, employee training, supply chain improvement and other substantive enhancements."

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