If you can smell it, it's in the air

Letter to editor from Elaine Fraser
Cape Breton Post
Saturday, Sept. 20, 2003

On Sunday, Aug. 31, there was a very strong smell of fuel over parts of Alder Point and Point Aconi. It was coming from the direction of the Point Aconi generating plant.

I called Dave Pickles at the plant to find out what was going on. I was informed there had been computer problems and a shutdown.

When this plant has a shutdown some kind of diesel fuel is used to get the plant back up to temperature. If this plant is such a state-of- the-art generator and burns so cleanly, why would the smell of fuel be so strong coming out of the stack?

On Sept. 11, in an article in the Post (Ontario Grits Campaign Against Sydney Sludge), Ontario Liberal Leader Dalton McGuinty makes it clear he is opposed to accepting our toxic problem in his province. Parker Donham is quoted as saying it's as if there is a skull and crossbones connected with anything from Sydney.

Anything that has as many toxic, cancer-causing chemicals in it as the tar ponds sludge should have a skull and crossbones on it.

Donham said Nova Scotians may as well get used to it because there is 1.1 million tonnes of contaminated material between the tar ponds and coke ovens. He states that it's unlikely it will make political or economic sense to haul that to another province. He makes it sound as though officials are going to try to burn it in Nova Scotia. There are two sites discussed: the cement plant in Truro and the Point Aconi generating plant. I am sure the people of Truro don't want our toxic sludge. My question to Donham and the government is how do they think Point Aconi can burn the sludge clean enough so that we can't smell it.

We in Point Aconi and surrounding areas don't want the sludge either.

Elaine Fraser
Alder Point Road