Forum, June 13: An alternative approach to wood chip plans

Thursday, June 13, 2019
An alternativeapproach to wood chip plans

Dartmouth’s request for proposal calls for a wood chip heating plant, plus an alternative of electricity generation and heating. That combination would work in a paper mill, which has a high, year-round thermal load and would be about 65-70% efficient, but Dartmouth has almost no summer thermal load, so that combination likely would not be viable.

The call for an electrostatic precipitator, or ESP, likely is a serious mistake because ESPs are very poor at collecting small particles 2.5 micrometers and smaller, so-called PM2.5, which are most harmful to students, faculty and nearby residents.

A much better approach would be a cyclone system to collect the larger particles, followed by a fabric filter system to collect the very fine particles. Fabric filter systems remove particles greater than 9.5 micrometers at 99.84% efficiency, and less than 0.36 micrometers at 99.98% efficiency.

These particles do not weigh much, but there are about 10 million to 15 million PM10 particles per cubic centimeter and about 100 million PM0.6 particles per cubic centimeter in the flue gases leaving wood chip boilers before air cleaning systems. It would be good to remove 99.98% of them.

Regarding CO2: Re-growing trees would sequester the combustion CO2 of Year 1 of plant operation over 80 to 100 years. The CO2 of Years 2, 3, 4, up to Year 40 would be added to the CO2 of Year 1, and be sequestered in a similar manner. In Year 40, there would be 40 forest areas in various stages of regrowth, as a result of cutting trees for burning.

Year 40 is assumed to be the last year of plant operation. The plant would likely be replaced. During Years 41 through 80, there would be 41 to 80 forest areas in various stages of regrowth.

From A to Z, there would be about 15% of additional CO2 that has nothing to do with combustion in the case of wood chips, about 20% in the case of wood pellets.



Democrats areselectively ‘pro-life’

It was with incredulity that I read a Forum letter by Ireen Daigle (“Pro-life and a Democrat,” May 30). The claim that the Democrats are “pro-life on most issues — except, of course, the one” is ludicrous on its face. To claim that “Democrats are for people — the poor, the elderly, the sick, children, immigrants, etc.,” is to ignore what Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas recently said about abortion being a tool of modern-day eugenics. The high court “will soon need to confront the constitutionality of laws like Indiana’s,” he wrote. “Enshrining a constitutional right to an abortion based solely on the race, sex, or disability of an unborn child, as Planned Parenthood advocates, would constitutionalize the views of the 20th-century eugenics movement.” That was in response to a lower court decision that delayed enforcing an Indiana law that prohibited abortion for race or gender selection or the potential disability of an unborn child.

It is becoming increasingly obvious that if Democrats call themselves pro-life it doesn’t include protection of those they deem “unfit.” Democratic legislators at both federal and state levels have a fixation with death. Alabama Democratic state Rep. John Rogers said, “Some children are unwanted, so why bring them into the world? You kill them now or you kill them later.” Democrats champion “death with dignity” laws for the elderly and the infirm, abortion for the unborn and euthanasia for those who are chronically comatose. About the only type of death they don’t like is the death penalty for those who commit murder. They are very selective in their “pro-life” views as their way of promoting lifestyles and “life values” of which they approve and protecting lives only of those they deem “persons.”

If Republicans could do a better job of feeding and caring for the poor, keeping them alive seems to be a good start.



Seeking smaller DHMC wheelchairs

Once again, our visit to Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center was fine — except for the “wheelchair issue.”

When I went to get a chair for my wife, two other men were looking for “normal sized” wheelchairs. This issue was brought before DHMC’s board (or so I was told in 2009) and it was pretty much decided to do nothing.

I’m all for inclusion, but it seems senseless that the vast majority of wheelchairs available are for the obese, to the dismay of people who have a “standard” body. We regular folks lose our independence in these family-sized chairs. When we can’t reach the rolling rims, we need a red-coated Samaritan to push us. Stop it, DHMC.