Compliance in Los Angeles County

The Case of Veolia

Veolia is a French transnational corporation, infamously known as the company in part responsible for the Flint water crisis. In Los Angeles County, Veolia has a waste recycling and disposal facility. Despite the “green” face recycling facilities often put forth, this facility has been subject to numerous recurring violations. Urban geographer Laura Pulido (2015) describes the significance of white supremacy in producing environmental injustice. Using the example of a battery recycling facility in majority-Latinx East Los Angeles, Pulido argues that white supremacy does not simply describe hate groups such as the KKK. Rather, it is an attitude of superiority that is much more ubiquitous, which corporations put into practice by knowingly polluting black and brown communities. The case of Veolia extends Pulido’s argument to a transnational level. Not only does the corporation act in continued noncompliance, but it is enabled to do so through transnational trade agreements. They import from 15 sites, mostly on the U.S.-Mexico border.