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Letter: Smog hurts everyone

Published: Monday, Feb. 24 2014 12:00 a.m. MST

During the recent smog episode, I developed my worst asthma in 25 years. It created weeks of illness combined with a lung infection. It cost hundreds of dollars in lost overtime/holiday pay and medical costs. I noticed others adversely affected by the unhealthy air.

I was shocked that with this hazard, the Utah Legislature charged off in all the wrong directions. They want to aggressively de-incentivize the budding natural gas/electrical car industries. There is also an effort to increase interstate speed limits. Regulatory institutions seem to rubber stamp refinery, medical waste burning and mining expansions.

Our state representatives should consider that many of the higher paying industries here are staffed by workers who see air quality as a prerequisite for a high quality of life. This includes those millions of dollars tourists leave here.

Republican legislators should also reflect that their party has a tradition of conservation and public health reaching back to Abraham Lincoln. Richard Nixon established the EPA, which protects U.S. lives and the environment.

Our state Legislature should stop playing around with lousy air, which sickens and shortens life! They should become a national example on how to respond to this sort of public health and industrial challenge.

Anthony Arnason

Midvale

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