To the editor:
In a recent letter to the editor, the writer compared the new EPA regulations on the coal industry to the demise of the anthracite industry and indicated that changes happen and we better get used to it, including wind turbines on local mountains. Changes does happen, and sometimes we have no choice but to live with it; however, there is a huge difference between the present situation and what happened to the anthracite industry.
In the case of anthracite, several alternatives came on the market and people used their God-given freedom to choose which they preferred. In the present case, government is using its coercive power to destroy an industry which is out of political favor. This is a gross abuse of governmental power and is absolutely criminal.
The writer referred to toxic gases. Coal does give off toxic gases when it is burned and for that reason EPA several decades ago required the installation of "scrubbers" on power plants. However, the "toxic" gas the writer probably refers to is carbon dioxide, which relates to climate change. Carbon dioxide is not a toxic gas, nor is it a pollutant, it is a natural component of the air we breathe, and life would not be possible without it. We have a camp in northeastern Pennsylvania which is basically on a pile of rocks. We are told it is a glacial landscape; in other words, there once was a glacier there. There have never been glaciers in Pennsylvania in recorded history, yet here is proof they once existed. Obviously, there was climate change before there were coal-burning power plants. Climate change is a natural phenomenon and closing mines and putting wind turbines on Jack's Mountain isn't going to stop it.
Several years ago, Brazilians cleared sections of the rainforest for farmland. Environmentalists demanded they stop because foliage creates oxygen from carbon dioxide and we would all die of asphyxiation if they continued. At least the Brazilians planted crops with green foliage; here in Mifflin County they want to replace the foliage with concrete bases for the wind turbines. I must wonder about their sincerity. It appears they are following a political agenda rather than showing concern for the environment.
Cyrus G. Beisel