LETTER: What to monitor for air quality in Grand Forks

The pollution in Grand Forks that is being measure by summer student Jordan Andrews is nasty stuff.

Editor:

Re: Andrews to monitor air quality (article, June 20 issue of the Grand Forks Gazette)

The pollution in Grand Forks that is being measure by the student summer project is nasty stuff.

Science is catching up with polluters and proving as much. Particulate matter is working its way from the lungs into internal organs, adding to the toxic load our children are getting from food, cosmetics, household cleaning supplies, lawn care products and other wonderful household chemicals.

However, there seems to be confusion about the exact terms of reference for the Grand Forks project.

Simply put, we need to know the amount of pollution over a period of time at important areas where we live and play. This project could be a significant step toward documenting that.

For example, what is the pollution at the BMX track when our kids race on Wednesday evenings, over a whole summer?  Or the Tot Lot in City Park, where mothers take the kids in the morning for some “fresh air,” and grandma walks her dog? Or the Farmers’ Market where we gather to buy organic food at Gyro Park?

How about Valley Heights, where industry’s own studies predicted an increased dose from the new smoke stack, or at the community gardens in Ruckle, long a traditionally polluted area?

Perhaps we should know more about the intersection of Boundary Drive and Central Avenue, where two of our schools are located amid thousands of trucks and cars, that stop, idle and accelerate away from traffic lights. Does the air quality improve as you move away from the road?

This is the kind of information that we need know, and that I hope this study produces.

Robert Chornenki, Grand Forks