At a recent hearing with the Army Corps of Engineers, Spokane citizens, 8 to 1, opposed increasing coal trains going through Spokane on their way to China. Concerns included noise pollution, air pollution and increasing cancer rates from diesel emissions, increased rates of asthma and respiratory illness, infrastructure not paid by the railroads, derailments, traffic congestion, damage to animal habitats, and the mercury that will continue to degrade our rivers and lakes as it floats back to us after being burned in China.
To me it wasn’t fair that 40-plus people got equal testimony with 600 to 800 people because they had paid line placeholders. Those few who supported coal exports had only one reason: short term economic gain. Those opposed to coal trains through downtown want good-paying American jobs that promote sustainable economic development that does not contribute to harming our planet for future generations.
Spokesman Review, you have missed the point: the hearing was not fair, and all jobs all not good jobs. To continue to ignore these accumulating issues is to endanger our future, our national security and our planet.