Read a Pacific Northwest, liberal perspective on world, national, and local politics. From majestic Redmond, Washington - the Northwest Progressive Institute Official Blog.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Port's dumping plan needs to be trashed

The Port of Seattle is planning to dump a ton of toxic waste right into Elliott Bay, because apparently, it's convenient, cheap and's just the Earth:
Port of Seattle Chief Executive Tay Yoshitani says he wants to run the "cleanest, greenest and most energy-efficient port in the United States."

But some environmentalists are calling the meaning of his words into question because of a port project that has received permission to dump PCBs in Elliott Bay.

PCBs are polychlorinated biphenyls, toxic chemicals used as fire retardants that were banned in the 1970s. They are so toxic and so long-lived that they are usually measured in parts per billion -- yet the port proposes to dump 9 pounds of them into the bay for an upcoming dredging project. The mud to be dumped would come from an area being studied for cleanup as part of the Harbor Island Superfund site.
PCBs are some of the most toxic chemicals ever invented by humans. They are extremely hazardous and highly dangerous. Why any person with a brain would think it okay to toss toxic sludge right into the waters just off the shore of a major American city where people live, work, and play is beyond me.

It is simply outrageous that the government, whether it be Ecology, the Army Corps of Engineers, the EPA, or any other authority charged with protecting our state's environment, would consent to or approve of this terrible idea. I don't need statistics, evidence, or findings to sum up this whole proposal: it's stupid and reckless. Some things are just obvious.

This garbage should be disposed of in the safest manner possible. It does have to go somewhere, but that somewhere should NOT be Elliot Bay. Hang the expense of safe disposal. The health of our bodies and our ecosystems is more important.

I'm tired of hearing excuses and retorts like, it's the cost of doing business or, your fears of grave consequences are exaggerated. We are already paying the price for a lack of foresight on the part of our ancestors, who did not fathom the ramifications of their decisions. We cannot afford to continue making the same mistakes and leave our children with an even bigger mess.

<< Home