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Papered Over 

Editor:

If “Pass me a Tissue” (Oct. 15) was meant to be reporting it was seriously lacking. It quoted no other source but Simpson and Didion. It asked no hard questions.

Simpson has yet to provide a detailed plan as to how the new plant will be environmentally friendly. Yet people are willing to believe him on faith.

The plant is purportedly going to be carbon-neutral. They will neutralize the carbon footprint globally by creating electricity. This doesn’t mean it won’t produce carbon emissions.

None of his claims address the question of pollution exposure on workers and nearby residents. What about emissions such as hexavalent chromium, mercury, lead, benzene and arsenic? Mills increase the cancer rates of workers and nearby residents, period. If we allow the mill to exceed legal limits again, then the rate will increase further.

The silence surrounding the issue terrifies me. Without a questioning populace, the most egregious abuses are possible. This is not hypothetical; it is historical. In the past, the local media has sacrificed its journalistic integrity. The local air board gave Evergreen variances, allowing them to exceed EPA limits. Then Tsang left his workers in the lurch. He who abuses the environment will abuse workers. I picture Tsang sitting on some island beach drinking cocktails laughing at us for being so naïve.

I am not comparing Simpson to Tsang. But have we not learned our lesson? It is our responsibility to ask questions, so the abuses of the past will not be repeated.

Leila Binder, Eureka

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