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READER'S EDITORIAL: WHY ISN'T OUR GOVERNMENT PROTECTING US FROM DUST AT OCOTILLO WIND SITE?

By Jim Pelley

Editor’s note: For months,  ECM award-winning photographer and Ocotillo resident Jim Pelley has been documenting clouds of choking dust at  Pattern Energy’s construction site for Ocotillo Express wind energy, where citizen monitors have routinely reported construction without water trucks present and twice resulted in fines on the developer for dust violations.  In this editorial, Pelley asks why the problem continues, raising serious questions for public officials who are supposed to protect public health.  The closest turbine is just 1500 feet from Pelley’s home.

October 9, 2012 --I have been told that they can make dust on this project site as long it is not over 20% opacity for three minutes. If there are a hundred trucks making 15% opacity dust all long day long I don’t understand why this is acceptable, because at the end of the day there are large amounts of dust in the air, it’s very easy to see.

PURPLE MOUNTAIN SAGE: CAMPING, MOI?

 
By Sharon Courmousis
 
May 14, 2012 (Boulevard)--“A little dust won't kill you”, said my parents as we packed up for the family camping trip. Being the oldest of four and an obedient child, I did resolve to have a miserable time. My pout lasted all of eight minutes after we arrived. Gosh! The rocks I collected were every one more beautiful than the last. We four kids ran off into the desert with admonitions, "Watch out for the snakes" fading fast. Middle brother muttering, "Why would I want to see snakes?" Oldest brother and I grinning, "Let's find some!". Youngest brother whining, "I'm gonna tell if you touch one!"  
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