commented on Who’s the Boss?
you must be young....
Mary Martin was an actress best known for playing Peter Pan in theater and in movies/TV. This candidate is a namesake of that long dead actress. Larry Hagman, another dead actor, was in fact her son.
Nov 21, 2012
commented on I, Anonymous
Is the author of this week's rant trying to channel Charles Mudede's old police blotter reports?
Nov 9, 2012
commented on Coal Piles Taller than the Columbia Tower and Wider than Downtown
We cannot force the railroad to build the overpasses. I have heard various figures, but they can only pay not more than 5% to 10% of a rail crossing improvment, the rest has to come from somehwere else. Some sort of federal law protecting interstate rail traffic from long long ago applies here
It is, however, possible to try and say that the company building the port, SSA Marine, could be forced to mitigate the costs of such overpasses rather then the railroad (which would be 100s of millions throughout the whole state, as this impacts more than just Seattle).
However, SSA Marine will be arguing hard that they should only have to mitigate costs that are related to the buildign site at Cherry Point in Whatcom county, not anything beyond.
Go to the scoping meeting and ask for the cost of the overpasses to be mitigated!
(it would be my hope that this sort of mitigation of cost would be adked of SSMA Marine and Peabody Coal as a condition of bulding the port, and that this would make the prouject too expensive for them to actually follow through and do. Then we would not have coal ports or coal trains!)
May 29, 2012
commented on Seattle Joins NW Dogpile in Opposing Local Coal Export Terminals
It is estimated 9 full trains going to Cherry Point, and 9 empty trains returning. That means 18 coal trains, half full, half empty.
There is still plenty of coal dust on the returing trains, they don't intend to wash them clean for the return trip. This is called "carryback coal"
The coal dust won't likely be all that visible, or "dusty" but each train car (not each train, each train car) sheds between 300-600 lbs of weight between Wyoming and here. So coal dust is being shed.
Possibly of greater health concern is the Diesel Particulate matter that the Trains will be pumping out hauling the coal. That has been linked to heart disease, lung disease, and cancer to begin a long list.
In rural areas there will be more delays of emergency vehicles at train crossings, costing lives.
And the noise of the trains rumbling through nearly every hour on top of the existing traffic will keep people awake at night. This may at first seem trivial, but studies show people think they "get used to it" but actually don't. Here we are pouring money into education but then keeping kids from getting a good nights rest and being able to learn once they get to school.
The tax payers will pay more to improve rail crossings than they will ever get in taxes (By federal law the Railroads cannot be forced to pay for these improvements) and smallere Washington communities will lose more jobs because of the disruption the increased rail traffic will create than will ever be made by those shipping the coal out.
Then the coal will be picked up by single hulled Cape Class Cargo Vessels. The ships with some of the worst safety record on the seas. 400 or more of these will be cruising past the San Juan Islands each year. A maritime disaster waiting to happen.
The project is being built on a Herring Spawing Ground, which threatens major King Salmon Runs, which in turn feed the Orcas. Ever see tourist literature from Washington State that does not feature Orcas?
Never mind Global Warming, this is just bad for the health and economy of our state.