Don’t breathe in

Rio Tinto Alcan has stated that its Kitimat Modernization Project will be cleaner in all areas of pollution except sulphur dioxide...

Dear Sir:

Rio Tinto Alcan (RTA) has stated that its Kitimat Modernization Project (KMP) will be cleaner in all areas of pollution except sulphur dioxide (SO2).

An RTA press release on KMP notes aluminum production will increase by “more than 60 per cent” (22Oc08).

An RTA rep at the recent Terrace and District Chamber of Commerce Business Expo confirmed that means at least 60 per cent more SO2.  What is RTA doing about that?

A Ministry of Environment “Factsheet” (23Ap13; on web) on KMP says no environmental assessment was needed because of “overall reduction in total waste discharge”.  That has allowed the ministry to just now grant a “permit amendment” to increase the SO2 emission (27 to 42 tonnes/day). Though the factsheet attempts to reassure, health effects, ominously, will be monitored.

Is KMP’s production of aluminum cleaner than its process of approval? The answer may be blowing in the wind. Just don’t breathe it.

David Heinimann,

Terrace, B.C.