Hillside-Trenton group to discuss NSP emissions with province

Sueann Musick
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TRENTON – A local environmental group will be heading to Halifax in the New Year to discuss concerns of emissions from Nova Scotia Power. 

Peter Boyles of the Hillside -Trenton Environmental Watch Association said he and other members are planning to meet with Liberal government representatives on Jan. 7 in Halifax to discuss health concerns about emissions from the utility’s Trenton generating plant.

The meeting will involve Minister of Energy Andrew Younger, Minister of Health and Wellness David Wilson and Minister of Environment Randy Delorey.

“We have kept in touch with Andrew Younger throughout the past few years so he is aware of the situation,” he said, adding he was reassured by the energy minister that “enough is enough” when it comes to dealing with this issue.

In the Nova Scotia Legislature this past week, Younger said he set up the meeting with Boyles and the other ministers because he considers the issue to be a high priority.

“I've already been out personally to see Mr. Boyles and see around there. I have stacks of pictures. I've seen the evidence, and this is a high priority. We've also raised the issue with Nova Scotia Power already and asked them to present us with a plan to address these issues,” he said.

The health concerns over the emissions were raised by Pictou Centre MLA Pat Dunn who asked whether a study should be done on the health concerns from the plant’s emissions.

“We are well aware of the environmental and health concerns of the residents of that area,” said Delorey, confirming that a meeting will take place with the group in the near future.

The association members believe that natural gas would be a positive solution to an ongoing problem for residents of Pictou County forced to live with the effects of fly ash coming from the stacks of Nova Scotia Power’s Trenton Generating Station.

Heritage Gas is investing $15.3 million to extend its pipeline to Pictou County, but Nova Scotia Power has not signed on for the Trenton plant.

Northern Pulp will convert its plant to natural gas as part of the company's plan to reduce its energy costs and improve air quality and environmental performance.

Natural gas burns cleaner than other fossil fuels, emitting 45 to 80 per cent less carbon dioxide than coal, and two-thirds that of oil, with negligible sulfur dioxides.

Organizations: Nova Scotia Power, Trenton Environmental Watch Association, Trenton Generating Station

Geographic location: Trenton, Halifax, Pictou County Northern Pulp

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