"A powerful storm packing strong winds, heavy rain and mountain snow is expected to hit Sunday night and Monday in Western Washington ...." The forecast calls for gusts up to 60 mph.
This would be a good time to ask ourselves whether it is a good idea to support a coal export terminal in Whatcom County. Frequent coal trains, and a coal terminal with piles of coal 60 feet high will spread fugitive coal dust even during the mild but constant offshore breeze at Cherry Point.
Coal dust is difficult to contain under the best of conditions. During a storm with strong wind gusts fugitive coal dust would be driven for distances that cannot be predicted. Fugitive coal dust never goes away. It spreads. It accumulates. It contaminates.
Fugitive coal dust is a source of serious health problems, particularly among the very young and the very old. High winds, such as are being predicted for Western Washington, are not unusual. As we listen to the wind, we should ask ourselves if a coal export terminal at Cherry Point is worth the few jobs that it will create for local workers, given the price that we will pay by dealing constantly with fugitive coal dust.