Fighting to protect our natural resources

Published 9:40 am Friday, June 9, 2017

To the Editor:

Sunday, May 21, I sat at my kitchen table reading the Saturday, May 20, edition of the Roanoke-Chowan News Herald. Pictured on page 10A were nine area students who had received a “Certificate of Achievement” from the Hertford Soil and Water Conservation District for posters they had created.

The theme of the poster contest was “Soil and Water…Yours for Life”. I loved this statement from the article: “The Hertford Soil & Water Conservation District Board of Supervisors supports education for all students in Hertford County to help them learn about natural resources and the need to protect them.”

In the fourth grade in Biscoe, NC, my teacher, Mrs. Burt, spent the year teaching and reinforcing to us the value of caring for our natural resources. We learned about conservation, planted trees on Arbor Day, visited Gaddy`s Goose Pond, and learned about the negative impact of littering. She taught us that WE are responsible for the health of our planet and its natural resources.

The lessons learned by that shy skinny little red-headed freckle-faced girl have been a guiding force through my life. I have lived those lessons to the best of my ability, taught them to my sons and teach them now to my nine-year-old granddaughter.

When VistaGreen threatened to visit upon our quaint county, a coal ash dump that will impact the natural resources of our county in a negative way, I found that I had to resist. I joined the Northampton County Citizens Against Coal Ash (NCCACA). I am fighting with all that is within me, what I learned in the fourth grade, and what the Hertford County students learned just this past year, to protect our county, its natural resources and its residents.

The goal of the NCCACA is to educate the citizens of Northampton County regarding the negative impact of a coal ash storage facility on the residents, land and future of our county.

While we recognize that this facility would bring some jobs to our county, we also realize that these are jobs that would jeopardize the health of those accepting them.

While we recognize that a “lined” coal ash pit is safer than an “unlined” coal ash pit, we realize that the contamination of our natural resources from the toxic heavy metals found in the coal ash, would not be “prevented” by the liner, but would only be “delayed”.

While we recognize that this coal ash storage facility would be considered by some as “economic development” for our county, we realize that the “economic impact” from contaminated air, water, wildlife and land would diminish our property values and cost many of our citizens their health and likely their lives.

Please, learn all that you can about the hazards of introducing coal ash into our community and help us fight this good fight for our county. Join the Northampton County Citizens Against Coal Ash Group page on Facebook and learn what you can do.

Wanda Flythe