Salt Lake City's inversion problem could mean bad news for business

Return To Article
Add a comment
  • Red Smith American Fork, UT
    April 21, 2014 9:34 a.m.

    Ban all development within 25 miles of the Wasatch Front.

    Smoking cigarettes within 25 feet of a building is illegal, but smoking tail pipes spewing toxic gases within 10 feet of the building is not.

    If air quality is the science to support smoking bans within 25 feet of buildings, then the same science goes for development.

    Wasatch Front air is lethal, because of poor planning of mega road and mega water projects on the wrong land. State air officials advertising “Utah has occasional poor winter air quality” is misguided. I-15 is a Carbon Monoxide Corridor not only in winter but all year long.

    Move all future development away from the Wasatch Front just like smokers are moved away from building for public health.

    Breathing is fundamental to living. The Wasatch Front cannot become a Denver. We don't have the natural resource of air now to continue developing along the Wasatch Front.

    Moving the prison, increasing speed limits to 85, expanding roads, expanding the SLC airport, mega transportation projects (UTA/Traxx/Front Runner and “Hive Passes”) in urban sprawl will make our air more lethal destroying the existing quality of life of current Wasatch Front residents. Move development elsewhere.

  • Allen Salt Lake valley, UT
    April 21, 2014 8:20 a.m.

    I remember hearing a few months ago a discussion on the radio about air pollution in SLC. Scientists are studying the problem and know exactly what causes our air pollution. I hope the DN will report on this so we will have accurate and factual information about our air pollution. Is it caused by population growth? By manufacturing? By vehicles? By mother nature? I don't know and I expect most of the people commenting on this article have opinions but don't really know for sure. Scientists know, and I hope the DN will keep us and the legislators informed so the legislators can pass workable laws and business people can make reasonable decisions about moving here or staying here.

  • george of the jungle goshen, UT
    April 21, 2014 7:08 a.m.

    Aluminum Chlorohydrate or fog that is so thick you cant see the white line.

  • Baron Scarpia Logan, UT
    April 21, 2014 6:32 a.m.

    That "Clean Air for Temple Square" campaign slogan above was meant to be sarcastic, but let's not forget that the LDS Church did put out a sustainability/environmental stewardship statement last fall that binds members to protecting God's creation.

    While the Temple Square angle is important, I believe the more Utahns see economic opportunities fizzle away due to our air quality -- loss of new businesses/employers coming to the state, increases in ObamaCare needs/costs due to local health problems, hurt to families, loss of tourism to Temple Square -- in other words issues that Utahns really care about -- we won't see much done on air quality.

    It is sad to see so much cynicism on this message board about air quality, blaming Mother Nature for our own filthy society.

  • casual observer Salt Lake City, UT
    April 20, 2014 1:25 p.m.

    Encouraging growth will increase pollution unless fundamental changes in our society happen: decreasing dependance on automobiles, sharp decrease in industrial emissions and a ban on burning wood, coal, etc. Much to my dismay, it's not likely to happen in the near future.

  • PP Eagle Mountain, UT
    April 20, 2014 12:55 p.m.

    The "actual" sad part is - this past winter was extremely mild as far as the Utah inversions go. One of the mildest I can remember in the past 20 years. Yet because of changing EPA standards the federal government rated it as one of the worst ever. Compared to other cities I have been in around the country and around the world the pollution problem in SLC is almost non-existent and over 90% of it is from natural causes. Every year the same tired people drag up the same "sky is falling scenario" telling us that if we walk outside we are going to drop over dead and that our children are going to get cancer by the time they are 8.

    What ever happened to well thought our, science based approaches to things. Example - 80% of the inversion is from cars - No - 80% of the man caused elements of the inversion are from cars. Since over 90% is natural that means less than 5% is from cars. Actually way way less but I am fudging in favor of the alarmists. I get very tired of fake science used to make a political point.

  • LDS Tree-Hugger Farmington, UT
    April 20, 2014 12:15 p.m.

    All the hub-bub about the dangers of cigarettes,
    and then NOTHING about truly cleaning air for EVERYBODY.

    Either the coal lobby is stronger than the outside business looking at coming in,
    it's really only a problem if it's against the Word of Wisdom.

  • cmsense Kaysville, UT
    April 20, 2014 8:05 a.m.

    Lets ban people, cars and cows (all that flatulance). While we are at it lets ban forest fires.

  • Darrel Eagle Mountain, UT
    April 19, 2014 10:02 p.m.

    The sad part is, only when it affects business will it be fixed.

  • Paloma10 Salt Lake City, UT
    April 19, 2014 5:34 p.m.

    As I consider making SLC my full time home is the inversion layer and air quality is the one thing that holds me back. I can't believe that they lawmakers haven't made a decision to take care of this. seems like that is their duty to assure or work towards assuring that the residents can at least breathe!

  • Wanderer West Jordan, UT
    April 19, 2014 4:51 p.m.

    I remember hearing many years ago that the early native people referred to the Salt Lake valley as "the valley of smoke." Meaning that they were aware of the natural geographic conditions that led to this valley being hazy and foggy in wintertime long before any people chose to live here permanently. While industry and the population can contribute to some degree, the valley itself is it's own worst cause of haze. Remember, we are living in the bottom of the Great Basin and when the weather patterns dictate, inversions happen. Fact of life.

  • New to Utah PAYSON, UT
    April 19, 2014 1:19 p.m.

    The Governor and the legislature don't want to address the real
    Issue which is population growth. Too many powerful interests like
    developers, realtors who also hold elective offices. Utah will continue
    to have the highest autism rate and quality of life will suffer.
    Only intelligent growth with lots of green areas will bring balance
    & common sense to the pollution issue.

  • Gene Poole SLC, UT
    April 19, 2014 1:02 p.m.

    My company is considering moving to SLC with 2500 new high tech non-polluting jobs. The annual inversion problem is making us reconsider. We estimate that in addition to the 2,500 direct jobs, there will also be an additional 10,000 jobs created in the communities up and down the Wasatch Range. Positives: business climate is one of the best in the nation, educated workforce, good work ethics, low crime rate comparative to other areas of consideration, incredible opportunities for off work activities.

    Conversely: the annual temperature inversion "problem" (more like catastrophe), traffic problems and areas for our RD& facility and manufacturing make commuting a serious consideration. Our facilities are more like a university campus in design and use, yet because we are manufacturing, we are assigned to certain areas of the Salt Lake Valley. The biggest problem is the inversion.

  • Frank Fourth New York, NY
    April 19, 2014 11:59 a.m.

    Clean air for Temple Square.

  • cmsense Kaysville, UT
    April 19, 2014 7:49 a.m.

    When I grew up in S. Calif. the smog was so bad it was like an inversion 80% of the time when there was not sufficient wind or rain. You could't see the mountains just a few miles away. Anti pollutioin measures definetly helped but there is still a smog problem often.
    Here we have a natural phenomenoh called the inversion where cold air gets trapped below hot air trapped by mountains and happens a few weeks a year, but everyone freaks out. Politicians have some power, but they can't veto inversions or regulate them. No one likes bad air, but we already have vehical emmission regulations, regulations for refineries and industry etc. So what if we got rid of stericycle, the refineries, and Kennocott? Does that even make much a difference, if the real cause is the population of the wasatch front continues to grow and there are more cars on the road? So what causes the pollution, something like 70-80% car emmissions? Oh, lets pick on the wood stove people. We already had no burn days, but thats not enough.

  • My2Cents Taylorsville, UT
    April 19, 2014 4:02 a.m.

    Feeble attempt is a good analogy of the Utah governemnt actions. Matter of fact it is not vehicle emissions or stove wood and coal that are very efficient and very well designed and don't pollute the air of Utah.

    Attacking the citizens and taxing the citizen has always been considered and easy solution at a feeble attempt to show federal authorities our government is trying to curb the inversion pollution. The government of Utah no longer calls this pollution air pollution, they are now calling our inversions air quality as particulate contamination and its correctly labeled, not at all vehicle emissions stuff.

    Particulate contamination is directly proportional to road acreage, road deterioration, vehicle speeds over the roads, and state and corporate applied materials of mud and salt to reduce icing and black ice before and after storms.

    Particulate contamination has increased since the I-15 expansion adding several thousand miles of road acreage to the inversion area. A trade off they did not consider that promotes development and expanison localize more population into the same space for the benefit of providing more passengers for the UTA Mob organization that has taken over control of this states growth.

  • Kings Court Alpine, UT
    April 18, 2014 6:11 p.m.

    This really hasn't attracted the attention of lawmakers. Their feeble attempts at a superficial response to the problem is more evidence of that. In fact, stericycle will not relocate far enough way and its pollution will still plague the Wasatch Front. An oil refinery was also given the go ahead to expand on the Wasatch Front, adding to more pollution. The only thing they did was play around with some wood burning stove regulations that really won't amount to any noticeable drop in pollution.