• Putting us at risk
    March 02,2013

    Putting us at risk

    Let’s address the issue of the toxicity of nanoparticles and ultrafines from biomass emissions at Plainfield Town Meeting at Twinfield School at 11 a.m. on Tuesday. These dangerous, unregulated particles will be a significant part of the combustion emissions that will be generated by Goddard College’s proposed wood chip biomass plant that will burn 1,000 tons of green woodchips per year, and pollute excessively our air, water and soil, not to mention our lungs.

    Goddard is insisting that there will be no health impacts associated with this plant. However, the neighbors remain uneasy and have asked Dr. William Sammons, who is a medical expert in exactly this area, to come and talk at town meeting and to explain how toxic the emissions can be. Among the issues he will address will be the concerns of parents for the safety and well-being of their children, many of whom are already being exposed to high levels of pollutants from attending the schools in the area that have woodfired boilers and no emission controls at all.

    Vermont has the highest asthma rate in the country, and is seems that further increasing the particulate emissions in this area when there are so many alternative energy choices to burning wood, is not in anyone’s best interest. There is more modern conventional technology available.

    There is growing concern as we approach town meeting because of the fact that the majority of Plainfield residents have no idea that Goddard is permitted to build this plant. Thankfully, appeals in the town zoning case and also Act 250 have halted its progress temporarily, but the adverse effect on air quality must be addressed. Leading medical organizations are opposing biomass plants because they present an unacceptable health risk.

    Karen Bouffard


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