Local Air Quality Problems Warrant Review and Action / Facebook post, Whatcom Hawk, Wendy Harris

burn ban alert.jpgYesterday at 3:37pm  November 28, 2015  Wendy Harris

I am attaching this hyperlink from the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency to contrast this with the efforts of the Northwest Clean Air Agency, which regulates Whatcom County.

Right now there is air stagnation that is keeping in smokes and fumes and air pollutants, resulting in poor, and in some areas, dangerous, air quality. All that the NWCAA does is issue an recommendation that people do not burn wood, especially outdoor, anywhere in the three counties(Whatcom, Skagit, Island) it covers.

In comparison, PSCAA is much more nuanced and willing to take appropriate actions to restrict and regulate, even though, as a review of their FB page reveals, they are subject to the usual complaints by people who oppose regulations and want to burn the cheapest heat source possible, regardless of the consequences.

The connection to this situation, and the situation with fossil fuels and coal is analogous. It involves the same core issues.. the economic feasibility of doing the right thing that protects public health and safety and air quality and helps reduce green house gases, even though it increases costs and regulatory constraints.

So why aren’t there more people concerned about this? This is in your neighborhood now. These pollutants are known to be among the most dangerous carcinogens to which you will be exposed. Why aren’t we trying to pressure the NWCAA, which would be easier to influence than federal agencies? I am not saying that climate change and fossil fuels are not important and should be the target of activism. I am asking why we are ignoring other important issues in our own backyard. Clearly, a review of the PSCAA info indicates it is more than feasible for us to have a more protective system in place.

Read Wendy’s post on the Whatcom Hawk Facebook page here.

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