Re: Air pollution.
The serious threat to the health of the population of the Fraser Valley was increased with the recent action of the Liberal Minister of the Environment, Terry Lake, in approving "Metro Vancouver's Solid Waste Management Plan."
This plan includes a proposal to build a garbage incinerator to burn 500,000 tonnes of Vancouver region's trash, converting it to ash and volatile toxic fumes which will enter the air stream and be trapped in the Fraser Valley.
At certain times of the year, often following a temperature inversion, pooling of polluted air over eastern Vancouver occurs and can be witnessed from the Port Mann bridge area. This polluted mass of air is finally blown into the funnel which is the Fraser Valley where the pollution crosses the threshold of human tolerance and the most sensitive, young children, asthmatic adults and those with chronic respiratory obstructive disease, arrive in the emergency departments of our hospitals.
It is inconsistent and contradictory for the Minister of Health to expect the health of the population to improve when the Minister of the Environment approves Vancouver's Waste Management Plan, which will undoubtedly diminish the health of the population!
Let us realise the term W.T.E. (waste-to-energy) facility is nothing more than a euphemism for a sophisticated incinerator. I note that the Liberal candidate, Laurie Throness, holds out hope "for some kind of zero-emission technology."
This is politically soothing but also absolute nonsense as no such thing as zero-emission technology can exist as matter cannot be destroyed but only converted into toxic gases and finer particulates, which can enter even more deeply into the lung.
The purpose of my letter is to expose the incongruity of the intentions of the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of the Environment who do not seem at all clear about the dangers to the public health of the million citizens of the Fraser Valley on incinerating garbage. It is truly a different sort of political mess !
H. Derrick Rogers Chilliwack