The Environmental Protection Agency panders to polluters and lacks the political wherewithal to hold them to account

When an MRI of my spine revealed an enlarged thyroid instead of the scoliosis the doctors had feared, they whisked me away for a biopsy. I lay awake as the surgeon stuck a needle into my neck and wiped away the blood. The next day, my mom told me the test result when I got home from school: thyroid cancer. I was eleven years old.

As the surgeons put me under for an operation that would remove my thyroid, I hoped I would still be able to run around outside with my brother, to clamber through the groves and streams that surrounded my home in the mountains of North Carolina.

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Source: Guardian Environment