by Harvey Wrightman
I’ll bet you thought that Ontario is all cleaned up now that the coal generators are shuttered. What could be next. Well, those oh so helpful cement companies have a little problem. Hey need some “regulatory relief” and who better to deliver than the environmental fascists. Paint it green and it’s ready to roll for 2015. From the pro-wind website of Envirolaw, “New regulations to reduce coal?“:
What’s this all about?
Back in 2008 cement and aggregate behemoth, Lafarge actually lost (hard to believe) an ERT appeal re: its proposal to burn used tires in its cement kilns at the cement plant in St. Marys. Coal was and remains the choice for fuel because of economics. Cement kilns need power-plant sized amounts of thermal energy to produce cement. Steel making and other metal refiners are also dependent on a low-cost coal as a source of energy/heat for operations. But burning rubber tires? Anyone remember the tire dump fire at Hagersville in 1990 and those plumes of black, toxic smoke?
When this was proposed, geneticist Joseph Cummins was interviewed and he made note of the large concentration of dairy farms located in Perth County which would be in the direct path of any emissions from the plant – an almost too perfect pathway to collect the toxic dispersants, concentrate them into milk and dairy products that then enter the consumer food chain. The contamination of dairy feed in Michigan in 1974 with polybrominatedbiphenyl (pbb) caused the death of 30,000 cows. While the Michigan example was extreme, the lesson from it a re: the dispersal of a toxin should not be forgotten.
Back to Envirolaw: [Para 5] “So how is Ontario encouraging the switch? As of now, the industries that want to use these alternative fuels are regulated under provincial law as waste disposal sites even though they are not in the waste management business. The change in law would mean that these facilities would still need to meet regulatory standards for air emissions and wastewater discharges; however, they would no longer require Environmental Compliance Approval (ECA) classifying the sites as “waste disposal sites,” and Environmental Assessment Act (EAA) requirements would no longer apply. The facilities would have flexibility to assess different fuels at their operations before applying for approval to use them on a long-term basis.”
As we’ve seen with wind turbine companies, if there’s a regulation that hinders their operations (like protection of an eagles’ nest), change the regulation – it’s so simple when the ministry mandarins, their wimpy political bosses and the industry dogs all think the right way, the green way. Problems with an environmental organization? Just cut them a cheque. Everybody gets in on that good old “good neighbour agreement” cash.
If anyone gets sick from toxic discharges – well, it’s all in their heads – and the $800/hour litigators who populate the ERT process will make sure of that.
This is still a proposal (Reducing Coal Use In Energy-Intensive Industries) of the Ministry of Environment ad Climate Change. Here’s the link to the EBR registry. They are taking comments until Feb. 2nd. Tell them what you think.