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Submitted: Fumigation site concerns

Revised on: 05.16.2018 at 11:15 a.m.

Posted on: 05.15.2018 at 07:00 a.m.

I am writing to express my concern about the proposed fumigation site in the Delco and Riegelwood communities.

The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, Air Quality Division held a hearing for Malec Brothers Transport, LLC., on May 3 at Acme-Delco Middle School.

The community had more than 300 people show up for the hearing on the proposed use of methyl bromide and the obtaining of a permit by the firm for a fumigation operation.

The company is seeking a permit to disperse the chemical onto logs and release the residue into the air.

Previously, the company was operating in New Hanover County.

They have now moved to Columbus County. They desire to emit up to 140 tons of the toxic in a year.

Apparently our county commissioners have failed to protect its citizens.  Several county commissioners were at the meeting but none spoke.

The attending county commissioners left midway through the meeting along with many employees of the company.

Concerned residents spoke of their opposition to the proposal. Representatives of the company spoke favorably of the facility in our locale.  I am advised that since Jan. 1, 2005, the EPA has banned the use of methyl bromide except for critical uses.

I am of the opinion that this is not the case for the Delco community.

The location of the release of the toxics into the air is within .06 miles of homes; ¾-mile of a charter school, and one mile of a middle school.

The chemical has been shown by medical research to reflect both acute and long-term medical effects. Methyl bromide is corrosive to both skin and the eyes. We don’t need this type of plume operation in our community.

Specifically, we don’t need the release of more toxics into the atmosphere.  In addition, the facility area has turned into a mess on Old Highway 87, Cronly Road, and the intersection of Fertilizer Road.

There is container noise, trucks blocking the road, emission of log residue on the roads and instances of other unsafe practices that involve running local vehicle traffic off the road.

Human waste material is handled by portable sewage. The firm has already demonstrated that it is not going to be a good neighbor.

I urge your readers to contact their county and state representatives to turn the tide of this infringement upon our community.

S. Carroll Pearsall

Riegelwood

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