Don Bill

Salt Lake City, UT

#1 Feb 23, 2011
The Neighbor from Hell

According to the Utah State Division of Air Quality, Kennecott contributes the majority of pollutants to Salt Lake County (carbon monoxide 48%, sulfur dioxide 79 %, nitrous oxide 77 %, PM10 72 % and PM2.5 66 %. That’s particulate matter smaller than 10 or 2.5 microns in diameter). Much of this extremely fine dust is composed of toxic, carcinogenic, heavy metals that enter the lungs and gets absorbed by the body). The requested permit to dig an additional 63 million tons a year from the mine (a 32 percent increase) into an airshed that has already been declared the “worst air in the nation” demonstrates a complete disregard for the welfare of our citizenry.

The Kennecott claims that its expansion will eliminate 80 percent of airborne particulates is based on a graduate student’s thesis written 15 years ago and incestuously paid for by Kennecott. This thesis assumes a wind speed of 7 mph, with maximum gusts of 35 mph. In reality, 50 to 70 mph gusts are not uncommon in the Oquirrh mountains, which could easily quadruple downwind toxicity. Much of the other data in the thesis is hypothetical, and heavily weighted towards the interests of Rio Tinto.

In a 2008 inventory of jobs, Kennecott Utah Copper contributed 1,900. Other businesses contributed far more. The top 25 hotels accounted for 5,500 jobs, and the top 140 private and public companies another 137,000. When one calculates from medical data the health effects of Kennecott’s pollutants, the resultant decrease in quality of life factors including death and disease, affects about the same number of people as it employs. The resultant health and worker productivity losses total untold millions of dollars. This is not an asset to the community. It is instead a serious liability.

Allowing them to drill and blast their way down 3000 feet into Rose Canyon,(The crown jewel of the Salt Lake Valley) will irrevocably destroy our most precious resource, our aquifer. The Herriman water supply. RT’s remediation?:“Buy bottled water”!

Kennecott tries hard to shine up its image as a good neighbor in the community. However that is a hard sell when one examines the history of previous loot and pollute ventures exploited world-wide by the team of Kennecott, Rio Tinto, and British Petroleum, all in business together, sharing a common reptilian management ethic.

If the DEQ lengthens the leash on this crocodile, RT will sully Rose Canyon much the way that BP did the Gulf of Mexico.

They *MUST* be stopped!

-Don Bill

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