Pollution hazard underplayed

Letter from Eric Brophy
Cape Breton Post
Mon., Sept. 14, 2009

In reference to the air pollution exceedance reported at the tar ponds (Air Exceedance Reported at Tar Pond Site, Sept. 3), my concern is with the Sydney Tar Ponds Agency’s failure to disclose all the facts and its attempt to downplay the incident.

In particular I mention the cavalier description of benzo(a)pyrene and its sources in the environment. The agency’s neglect to list hazardous waste sites as a major source is obviously quite self-serving and deceptive. Most important is its failure to acknowledge that benzopyrene is the most carcinogenic PAH (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon) studied and has been linked to increased incidence of skin, lung, bladder and gastrointestinal cancers (U.S. Department of Health Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry Publication, PAH Toxicity, June 1990).

The agency states that the exact source of the exceedance is under investigation. I await its report but suspect that once again the exceedance will be attributed to increased vehicle traffic in the area and in no way linked to work on the site.

However, Christ walked on water and I still believe in miracles.

Eric Brophy
Lingan Road, Whitney Pier