The GEC recommends that
Port Authority and Development Authority and other agencies charged with
economic development in Glynn County protect our local economy by
the following actions:
Increases in air pollution can have economically destructive consequences.
The local agencies charged with economic development should ask the GA-EPD
for an independent study of the implications of the proposed Pulp Mill air
permit to IAP operations and other Port of Brunswick business. Furthermore,
significant investments have been made recently on the economically
depressed Brunswick Peninsula, which could be stymied by a reversal in our
recent successes in reducing air pollution.
Brunswick currently has an odor problem, yet no definitive study has been
done to locate the sources and identify potential solutions. A study is
needed to investigate the current odor problems before any more air permits
are issued by the GA-EPD that significantly increase pollution and the
resulting odors. This study should quantify the economic impact of odors on
key industries such as tourism.
Brunswick and Glynn County currently do not have an odor ordinance. The
City and County Commissions should explore an odor ordinance to complement
the no burning policy in the City.
The current air permit request should be withdrawn until the above studies
have been completed by a party independent of the Pulp Mill and Georgia EPD.
Potential technologies to meet the desired goals of the Pulp Mill, Port
Authority, Development Authority, the City of Brunswick, and Glynn County
should be identified.
The implications of the air permit request and
associated increase in pollution and pulp and paper production have
implications beyond air quality such as water usage, waste water treatment,
and waste management.
Water Use: There is no information
about the resulting increase in water usage from the Floridan Aquifer and
potential to make the saltwater intrusion problem worse on the Brunswick
Peninsula from the increase in production at the Pulp Mill. Georgia is
currently developing a statewide Water Management Plan and any increases in
water use should be limited until the plan is completed. The City of
Brunswick has already abandoned several municipal wells due to salt water
intrusion at great expense to the taxpayers. Water use issues need to be
resolved prior to an air permit being issued which would, in essence, be a
GA-EPD approval of the proposed increase in Pulp Mill production.
Treatment: The Pulp Mill is
currently injecting oxygen into their effluent discharges in Turtle River.
The increase in production can reasonably be expected to increase waste
water discharged. The Pulp Mill should demonstrate that they can
accommodate water treatment on the plant site before any increase in
production, and before approving any Air Permits to increase production.
- Solid Waste Management
Plan: Wastes from the Pulp Mill are
currently being piled high on a marsh hammock, changing the skyline in
Brunswick and areas surrounding Turtle River. A Solid Waste Management Plan
should be part of any plan to increase production.
Ultimately, the first step is for our community to be aware of what is
happening very quietly around us and in EPD offices in Atlanta. To be
unaware is threatening to our health, quality of life, and the economic
future of Glynn County