Friday will mark one year since two men died at the Community Recycling Center near Lamont. A new study by a local group shows the poisonous gas that killed the men, still lingers at dangerous levels around the facility.
According to officials, hydrogen sulfide gas killed the men on October 12th, 2011.
The Committee for a Better Arvin has been taking air samples near the facility since the deaths, hoping to prove Community Recycling is polluting the air.
Flowers and white crosses still sit outside the facility's entrance as reminders of the two men who died because of a hazardous gas at this facility.
"It's polluting our air, and it's polluting it in a degree that's not tolerable," said Sal Partida, President of the Committee for a Better Arvin, about Community Recycling.
The group's belief that the facility is polluting the air is why, for the last year, they've been taking air samples around the facility, testing for unsafe levels of air pollution.
"We got the training to take the precise samples so that nobody can say you took them wrong," said Partida.
The committee said it found 18 times the EPA safe level for hydrogen sulfide near the facility. It's the same gas that killed the workers.
"You can smell it every day. It's a strong smell that hits you," said Byanka Santoyo, who said she got migranes while testing the air.
San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District is the governmental agency in charge of checking the facility. They said they are currently reviewing the group's report. But, based on their initial findings, they said they don't necessarily think the numbers the committee found are as bad as they seem.
"We do know that what they are indicating for hydrogen sulfide is below the one-hour standard for hydrogen sulfide. It is actually below what the EPA says is allowable," said Jamie Holt, Communications Director for the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District based in Fresno.
The Valley Air District said it has not done hydrogen sulfide tests of their own at the facility in the last couple years. But, because of the study they're checking on the facility weekly. The committee hopes those checks will lead to the facility's closure.
"We have the worst air and we want to fix our air," said Santoyo. "We want them to shut down. We want it shut down completely."
There is a pending lawsuit with the county that may close the facility.
Neither Community Recycling nor its attorney could be reached for comment on Thursday.
The committee will hold a rally near the facility at the intersection of Highway 184 and Highway 223 on Sunday at 2 p.m.