EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 2022-13

SUBJECT: RENEWAL OF DECLARATION OF MAJOR DISASTER AND STATE OF SIGNIFICANT EMERGENCY ARISING FROM THE BURNING OF THE SUPER TYPHOON WASTE AND DEBRIS SITE ON THE ISLAND OF TINIAN


WHEREAS, on or about June 19, 2022, a grass fire started on the island of Tinian. This fire spread and grew in intensity until it reached a location where waste and debris from Super Typhoon Yutu was being sorted and stored for disposal. Much of the waste and debris stored at the site included “white good” waste, e-waste, tires, batteries and other debris that contained toxic chemicals dangerous or otherwise unhealthy for humans.


WHEREAS, upon reaching the Super Typhoon waste and debris storage site, much of the waste and debris was consumed by fire.


WHEREAS, the burning of the waste and debris has potentially released toxic chemicals into the ground where it may seep into Tinian’ s aquifer if it is not cleaned up and disposed of in a timely manner. The aquifer is the sole source of Tinian’s drinking water and contamination of the aquifer would threaten the public health and welfare of the people of Tinian. This threat cannot be understated. Im.mediate action is necessary to protect the health and safety of the people of Tinian.


WHEREAS, such threat to the people of Tinian and their health necessitates an organized response by a public, private, and government entities to protect life, public health and safety.

WHEREAS, the Office of the Governor has consulted with the CNMI Homeland Security & Emergency Management Office and other agencies, and believes a renewal of the declaration of major disaster and a state of significant emergency is warranted.


WHEREAS, authorizing the Secretary of Finance to be able to access, reprogram or transfer funds from accounts of Executive Branch departments and agencies, including autonomous or independent entities, in order to fund the containment, mitigation, and remediation of the threat to the health and welfare of the people of Tinian is a reasonably necessary response in order to ensure that the government is able to meet the threat.


NOW THEREFORE, I, RALPH DLG. TORRES, pursuant to the authority vested in me as Governor of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands by Article Ill,§ 10 of the Commonwealth Constitution, the Homeland Security and Emergency Management Act of 2013, 1 CMC § 20144, do hereby declare a Major Disaster and State of Significant Emergency for the island of Tinian due to the threat posed by toxic chemicals to the people of Tinian caused by the burning of the Super Typhoon Yutu waste and debris site:

SUBJECT: RENEWAL OF DECLARATION OF MAJOR DISASTER AND ST A TE OF SIGNIFICANT EMERGENCY ARISING FROM THE BURNING OF THE SUPER TYPHOON WASTE AND DEBRIS SITE ON THE ISLAND OF TINIAN


WHEREAS, on or about June 19, 2022, a grass fire started on the island of Tinian. This fire spread and grew in intensity until it reached a location where waste and debris from Super Typhoon Yutu was being sorted and stored for disposal. Much of the waste and debris stored at the site included “white good” waste, e-waste, tires, batteries and other debris that contained toxic chemicals dangerous or otherwise unhealthy for humans.


WHEREAS, upon reaching the Super Typhoon waste and debris storage site, much of the waste and debris was consumed by fire.


WHEREAS, the burning of the waste and debris has potentially released toxic chemicals into the ground where it may seep into Tinian’ s aquifer if it is not cleaned up and disposed of in a timely manner. The aquifer is the sole source of Tinian’s drinking water and contamination of the aquifer would threaten the public health and welfare of the people of Tinian. This threat cannot be understated. Im.mediate action is necessary to protect the health and safety of the people of Tinian.


WHEREAS, such threat to the people of Tinian and their health necessitates an organized response by a public, private, and government entities to protect life, public health and safety.


WHEREAS, the Office of the Governor has consulted with the CNMI Homeland Security & Emergency Management Office and other agencies, and believes a renewal of the declaration of major disaster and a state of significant emergency is warranted.


WHEREAS, authorizing the Secretary of Finance to be able to access, reprogram or transfer funds from accounts of Executive Branch departments and agencies, including autonomous or independent entities, in order to fund the containment, mitigation, and remediation of the threat to the health and welfare of the people of Tinian is a reasonably necessary response in order to ensure that the government is able to meet the threat.


NOW THEREFORE, I, RALPH DLG. TORRES, pursuant to the authority vested in me as Governor of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands by Article Ill,§ 10 of the Commonwealth Constitution, the Homeland Security and Emergency Management Act of 2013, 1 CMC § 20144, do hereby declare a Major Disaster and State of Significant Emergency for the island of Tinian due to the threat posed by toxic chemicals to the people of Tinian caused by the burning of the Super Typhoon Yutu waste and debris site:

SIGNED AND PROMULGATED ON THIS 23rd day of August, 2022

/s/

RALPH DLG. TORRES
Governor

CNMI Office of the Governor
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