Sulphur dioxide scrubbers were once again front and centre at Kitimat council Monday.
A former Chief Medical Health Officer with Northern Health says he was shocked that Rio Tinto didn’t install scrubbers as part of its Kitimat smelter modernization project, and says he still can’t believe it hasn’t happend
Dr. David Bowering told Kitimat council that the permitting process for increased SO2 emissions from the smelter did not adequately represent the public interest.
Bowering says monitoring SO2 levels doesn’t take into account the long term risk of repeated low-level exposure to pollutants.
Council also heard from Greg Knox of SkeenaWild Conservation Trust who vowed to continue to push for scrubbers to reduce SO2 emissions.
A council motion introduced in January by Kitimat mayor Phil Germuth supporting the installation of salt water scubbers was voted down, but Dr. Bowering encouraged council members to continue advocating for the health of their community.
A town hall meeting on smelter emissions is set for Saturday in Kitimat.
UNIFOR Local 2301 says Rio Tinto has declined to participate.