Environmental crime and pollution: wasteful reflections (1).

The history of men is reflected in the history of sewers.... Crime,intelligence, social protest, freedom of conscience, thought, theft, allthat human laws prosecuted or have prosecuted was hidden in this pit. --Victor Hugo, Les Miserables


IN THE 1970s, A NEW MENACE BECAME THE CENTERPIECE FOR A NEW GENERATION OF environmentally minded reformers. Organized crime, which controlled the private sanitation industry in the Northeast, moved center stage. This took place at approximately the same time that the U.S. government passed the first important toxic waste legislation in its history. The most significant legislation passed was the Resou