It would be nice to pristine air, no pollution at all. But then I couldn't
drive a car, or have any of the other modern conveniences I want and am used
to.Its all about balance.From what I have read, the
refinery promises no additional pollution will be put into the air if they
expand because new pollution control equipment will be installed.Given all this I don't have a problem with the expansion.Lets
also convert all fleet vehicles in Utah to natural gas. This includes buses and
the Front Runner. Also lets require that people who burn wood do it
responsibly. I used to live by a neighbor who heated his house with wood
exclusively. Problem with that is he insisted on having his firebox temperature
very low which meant he was always putting out a lot of smoke, and quite often
it drifted in my direction and it actually made my house smoky. The state needs
to regulate wood furnaces since people won't do it themselves.
@ingslc - you're right - let's move the refineries where they
won't pollute anyone who matters. How about Sevier County? No, they have
been fighting a natural gas fired power plant there for years. How about Vernal
by the oil fields? No, they have worse pollution than we do here. How about the
moon? Nobody lives there.When the refineries were built, they were
within the boundaries of the inversions we have today - the mountains, the lake,
the snow-cover that result in the inversions haven't changed. What has
changed is that greedy people found cheap land and poor people to buy cheap
homes right next to the refineries. Later came rich people with more dollars
than sense who bought land up on the mountains overlooking those refineries.
Now, they complain about the smell from the refineries - perhaps they should
have opened their noses before their pocketbooks when they bought their
mansions, most of which have 4-5 car garages to park their gas-guzzlers. And,
it's what they park in those garages that keeps this state hooked on
letting those refineries expand. The smell is just an indicator of what happens
when greed gets decoupled from intelligence.
"Haven't people been regulated enough to make things safe? I guess we
could go back to hors and buggy days." The answer to your question is
"no." As a state employee I worked for both the Department of
Environmental Quality and the Department of Health. Though there are good
people in those departments, both of them are desperately underfunded,
especially DEQ monitoring, and they are hamstrung by private interests who are
determined that they don't do their jobs. Regulation of environmental
pollution is very poor. The public doesn't know how poor.
Thank you ingslc for adding some sensibility to the discussion!Just
because we have a robust military doesn't mean we should store nuclear
weapons waste next to an elementary school. Just because we eat bacon
doesn't mean we need to have a pig farm situated in a suburban
sub-division. And just because we use cars doesn't mean we should have
refineries directly upwind of our population centers.I think
individuals need to accept some responsibility when we have poor air quality
days, and speed limits on freeways should be reduced to lower car emissions. I
also think we should adopt California-level emission standards on cars, like a
lot of other states have. But I also think it makes zero sense to have
industrial polluters in such close proximity to our children.Maybe
we can make a grand bargain here: The Legislature can move the prison to some
other area so realtors can make some money, and we can provide tax incentives to
get the refineries moved to a less populous area with better air flow.Making school children wear surgical masks reveals the absurdity of the
We in Davis County will be breathing a few more pounds of toxic air thanks to
our "representatives" in the legislature.
I just read some of the LDS Church's environmental stewardship admonitions.
I sure hope the leadership of this state reads the same and I will
be holding my breath.
People who oppose refineries are NOT hypocrites. Different places are suited to
different industries. Refineries do NOT belong in a very populated, urban
setting that is prone to winter inversions. Its that simple. When these
refineries were built, they were built in a location that was then very far away
from most people - even back in the day they understood that those refineries
did not belong in backyards. Our city and valley has changed so much since then
and the refineries no longer fit here. They should take their 45 permanent new
jobs to a part of the state with a more open and robust airshed, a place not
prone to inversions. There are many places in the state that would rejoice over
those 45 jobs.
A lot of people are apparently reacting to the DN editorial without having read
it. If the expansion requires Holly to increase the safety of the plant and
reduce emissions, then everyone wins with the expansion.There are
few things in life that are black and white. As the writer suggests, we could
make a dramatic change to the air quality in the valley with drastic changes.
She should enumerate what those changes might be. Shutting off all natural gas
and banning all driving on bad air days comes to mind. Of course a lot of people
would die. And we would still have inversions, the valley would still be socked
in, and it would much more miserable and dangerous living here during
inversions. Perhaps those complaining the loudest should suggest a few
solutions. Preventing Holly from expanding could conceivably make air quality
worse - I don't see how that would a solution to anything.In
the meantime, there's a cheap and easy remedy for those who are bothered by
the bad air (most of us aren't): wear a surgical-type mask rated to filter
There has been a refinery in Woods Cross since at least June 3, 1909 when UTOCO
started refining oil from Ashley Valley. There are always those who buy a home
next to a feed lot and then complain about the smell just as there always those
who buy a home next to a refinery and then do everything they can to shut down
the refinery.Life has trade-offs. If you want the splendid view
enjoyed by many in Bountiful, you're going to have to endure the smell.
The refineries were there first. You knew it before you purchased a home in the
A few years ago we wholeheartedly embraced the concept of 'drill, baby,
drill'. This is that concept manifest. We made the deal. We declared that
domestic production was paramount, and that conservation efforts were foolish.
Now all we have to do is live with it.
Haven't people been regulated enough to make things safe? I guess we could
go back to hors and buggy days. I think it is a bit hypocritical to complain
about refineries while you drive your car and eat food harvested and hauled by
vehicles that use fuel.
People who oppose refineries should never buy its products; gasoline, heating
oil, most plastics, or buying any food, clothing or any goods transported on
trucks! Otherwise you become a hypocrite.