Green Festival Speakers

Patty Martin


Patty Martin is an environmental activist from Washington State. In 1997, as mayor, of the small town of Quincy, WA, she helped to expose the illegal use of hazardous waste in fertilizers. Wastes from steel mills, coal fired power plants, nuclear fuel processing, mining and other industrial activity were being sent to companies that transformed them into fertilizers. The situation in Quincy was covered as part of a Seattle Times investigative series Fear in the Fields: How Hazardous Waste Becomes Fertilizer and subsequently a book titled Fateful Harvest: The True Story of a Small Town, a Global Industry, and a Toxic Secret (Harper Collins, 2001). More recently, Quincy is the location for the siting of multiple data centers, each relying on dozens of locomotive sized 3600 hp diesel generators for routine maintenance purposes as well as during electrical outrages. The consequence is the release of tens of tons of diesel exhaust and other toxins into the air she d over Quincy. To facilitate the siting of these facilities the air quality regulations were gutted in 2009 and the state has set a precedent setting "goal" of 100 cancers per million (from air pollution) for Quincy. Quincy is a predominantly low-income community and 74% Hispanic.