Letters to the Editor

Your views in 200 words or less

Tag: air pollution


COAL: Free the energy market with a carbon fee

Re: “China may finally be taking air pollution seriously” (editorial, 2-6).

There was an amusement park next to the Asarco smelter in the 1950s. Rides were nine cents on Wednesdays. Summer air tasted of sulphur, and there must have been arsenic and lead in the dust under the go-carts. We didn’t know; no one ever talked about it.

Today the pollution from coal is well understood. Thank you for reporting on it, including the startling fact that deadly pollution from China, some from U.S. coal, is crossing back over the ocean to us.

It is a relief to know

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POLLUTION: Redraw burn ban boundaries

Re: “EPA deadline drives state to boost air rules” (TNT, 2021).

The air pollution regulators are at it again relative to restricting wood-stove burning in our area.

They just don’t understand that enforcing burn bans based on artificial political boundaries doesn’t work. For example, under a King County burn OK and a Pierce County burn bank, a home on the Enumclaw side of White River could burn away legally, while a home a few feet across the river in Buckley would be banned from burning and subject to heavy penalties and fines.

The regulators should be smart enough to

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POLLUTION: Refinery fire less of a threat than wood stoves?

Re: “Washington state investigates cause of BP refinery blaze” (TNT, 2-19) and photo.

With all that black smoke spewing for hours at least, “the U.S. EPA tested the air near the facility and at locations downwind and found no measurable threats from airborne pollutants related to the fire, according to the article.

Meanwhile, the Pierce County air pollution sniffers are ready to shut down with $1,000 fines the few remaining stokers of wood-burning stoves or heaters.

Do the Pierce County sniffers and the Cherry Point air sniffers come from the same planet?


BURN BAN: Where’s evidence of bad-air deaths?

Re: “We are concerned about our air, and we are in this together” (Viewpoint, 12-26).

The claim by the authors – a health department doctor and a chamber of commerce official – is that 1,100 deaths in this state are caused by fine-particle pollution. Please, tell us more.

How many of the “estimated” deaths are of people who live in Pierce County? Show us the death certificates, signed by doctors, stating the deaths were caused by fine-particle pollution.

Why is it that everyone I know of knew with symptoms stated was a smoker or lived a sedentary lifestyle?


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BURN BAN: Tacoma mostly meets air standards

I fully agree with your editorial on wood smoke (TNT, 12-18). If you review the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency emissions data on wood smoke, you will see that all of Tacoma meets the new “small particle” emission standards except for one small area around Fern Hill.

The CAA researched this problem for over a year and came to the conclusion that the residents in this low-income area could only afford to burn wood to heat their homes. No other area in Tacoma exceeded the new threshold, but the Fern Hill residents denied they were the problem.

The air

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