Submission Number: MBTL-EIS-0002117
Received: 11/16/2013 12:50:21 AM
Commenter: Leah Smith
Agency: Cowlitz County, the Washington Department of Ecology, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Initiative: Millennium Bulk-Terminals Longview EIS
Attachments: No Attachments
Hello, please take the two issues outlined below in consideration when deciding the scope of the EIS. The environmental impacts will have negative effects on both people’s health and the state’s economy.
Mercury is a heavy metal that can appear in several forms, all of which can produce toxic effects in high enough doses. When one consumes enough doses he/she could get mercury poisoning, which is a dangerous disease. The uncovered trains transporting coal throughout the northwest will release coal dust to the environment and to the people of the northwest. When mercury is released into the environment, it evaporates, travels in air currents, and then falls back to earth. Inhaling the mercury from the coal dust can poison the people in the area. The body can absorb approximately 80% of the toxins. Also when mercury enters the aquatic environment, it can be transformed by microorganisms into a much more toxic form, methyl mercury. This toxic form accumulates in fish, and people consume that methyl mercury when they eat the fish from the polluted area. Either way people would be consuming mercury from the future air pollution and water pollution. Why should we expose mercury to the northwest when it has zero benefits to us? The people of the northwest will suffer from the coal dust, and could possibly develop a dangerous disease. This is just one rational reason not the install these coal exports.
We live and work in the beautiful state of Washington. It is a destination for nature and wildlife lovers locally and across the country. Our national parks provide countless outdoor recreational opportunities and also provides to the state revenue from tourism. Visitors are attracted by the prospect of enjoying unspoiled beaches, scenic vistas, historic landscapes, wildlife viewing, fishing and many other activities. According to the National Park Service, in 2009 there were more than 7.5 million visits to parks in this state resulting in $248 million spent in local communities. Please evaluate the effect on the well being of the people in this state. The destruction of the aesthetic draw and the loss of money that would result could drastically reduce the state revenue, cause job losses and lower the standard of living for those affected. In addition there is concern that many businesses near train lines will have decreased patronage because of the high number of trains. These trains and the resulting delays will discourage people from visiting businesses located near train crossings. Customers who will have to wait for long periods of time will choose to go somewhere else. Employees may have a hard time getting to work putting their jobs at risk.
Please evaluate the financial risks our state may have to deal with and the loss of our states image and identity as a place to enjoy nature because of these trains passing through. In addition we request that you pay special attention to the health effects that mercury can have on the residents of Washington State.