Re: James Fankhauser’s letters that arsenic is everywhere.
There is a common misconception that continues to become evident in letters addressed to this paper. And that is that the presence of any element related to the proposed Ajax Mine site is concluded to be somehow problematic. The letter posted by J. Fankhauser is a perfect example.
People who are truly capable of addressing issues of potential toxicity would understand that the presence of an element does not imply that it will harm anything. There are thresholds for all elements of concern that need to be met before they are deemed problematic, or in this case, toxic.
The issue will therefore be whether or not any of these elements can reach those thresholds.
In the case of arsenic, letter writer L.P. Piggin suggested there would have to be concentration of arsenic at the site before it could ever get to toxic levels.
Just having arsenic "blowing around" the site is not enough to indicate a problem. The dust itself would probably be the bigger hazard, not the percentage of arsenic in that dust.
I am not necessarily for or against the proposed project. I don't think anyone could take a proper stand without knowing what is at stake. That cannot be known until after submittal of the environmental assessment.
However, I am certainly against either side using fear tactics to gain advantage over the other. I am in favour of leaving it to the professionals that actually work in these fields of expertise to do their jobs and work with the actual data to come up with proper conclusions.
I am sure that their data set is a lot better than using the Internet to come up Australian mine examples to improperly project to this site.
“Fear always springs from ignorance.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson