I was done with my shopping at Acme, had picked up a bouquet of flowers, and saw the Blue Crab and ducked in to get some food to go…Heck, I didn’t feel like cooking…  I decided to pass upon driving through the new WSFS atm, and instead came straignt out of Suburban Shopping Center, got stuck at the light where the Soviet interference blocks out WDEL, and with the green, pulled straight ahead onto Rt.4 towards the Bob… I go up the rise that is the bridge, squeeze down to one lane, and look to my left at where the new power plant will be. thinking of course it would be way off in the corner by the railroad tracks… As I looked, it slowly dawned that it would be right at the corner, right next to the bridge i was on…  Holy Crap.

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I would be directly under that smoke stack at least 4 times every day… Why would that concern me?  Because concentrations of the heaviest particles are thickest the closer one gets to the stack…  My open window or car vent would suck those in, and keep them in my car, for what? maybe a mile, or two?  I would be breathing lots of stuff that normally stays deep underground… Like lead.  Like cobalt, Like uranium, Like Radon. I know, as do you, that all it takes is one atom to get sucked into my lungs, bond with a cell tissue, and stay there, and I die of lung cancer.   Of course it could happen in Ohio, and since atoms never die, get blown from there over to Rehoboth Beach, and be hanging right above the ocean about an inch, right where I come up and gasp for air… and the same thing could happen… Therefore I have to look at probabilities.  My probability of dying from cancer is almost infinitely larger when I drive under the stack 4 times every day, or 28 times every week, or 1456 times at the minimum, every year I live in Newark…  Just imagine the probability from those living in Devon, less than 200 yards from the belching stack…

Belching, as in burping up lead, cobalt, antimony, uranium, cesium, strontium, radon,  Ever had to work with someone who had bad breath?  This would be infinitely worse….

Here is where you say… Wait!  But Jack Markell and Sam Latham all said that gas was cleaner than coal.  How does you headline fit in with your claims that gas is dirtier than coal….

Great question… Let us answer that with an entertaining example….  let us say there is a house up the street, shared by 4 young people, maybe they are in a band even…. But rumor is they smoke pot…   Now let us say, you rent one of your rooms out to Justin Beiber, and Lo, come to find out he smokes pot too…  but not that much…. Now, which of the two, is going to provide you the greatest opportunity to get high from second hand smoke:.  The reggae band 15 houses away, or Justin Beiber who crashes at your house when on breaks from his tour?

It’s the same way with carcinogens in pollution.  Coal plants are in Ohio.  This 248MW natural gas co-generation power plant, is 200 yard away….

The figures for mean damages per ton of emissions are higher for natural gas plants than for coal plants because of the locations of the plants. If you think about it, a power plant located near an urban area will do more human damage than one located in the country, all other things being equal….

There can be no question.  The rate of death will jump in areas surrounding Newark if this power plant goes in.  Explaining it is cleaner than coal is irrelevant for there is no coal plant going in… The comparative factor must be against the status quo.  Right now, there is nothing polluting the air breathed by the citizens of the town of Newark. Soon there will be… and obviously as a result, more people and animals will die horrible, painful deaths than do now.  That is inevitable, and must be recognized, while at the same time, not blown out of perspective.

There are times when the benefits might be worth the risk of dying prematurely. WWII for example.  And not everyone will die early. Just those unlucky to breathe in the unlucky molecule, which today, doesn’t exist in Newark but when finished, will soon be belched out 24/7 right there by Route 4’s bridge over Amtrack..  Those in receivership will die, while the rest of us live on… The question stands: is this power plant worth dying for? Is the money being made for its investors, worth the copays our estate will fork over on our own terminal medical bills…

You say yes?  or was that a no, I heard?

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