Letter: Our air quality is precious, let’s keep it that way

Photo courtesy of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

To the editor:

A recent Harvard study has linked COVID-19 related deaths to respiratory illnesses associated with air pollution. Strong evidence also shows that the virus travels a great distance on soot. Knowing this, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is aiming to loosen restrictions on power plant emissions, including soot rather than tightening them to prevent the spread of the virus.

Here in the Mid-Hudson Valley, our air quality is precious. We need to keep it this way.

Danskammer LLC is proposing a new fossil fuel power plant in Newburgh, New York in the midst of all of this. Danskammer is proposing to burn fossil fuels that will pollute our air constantly, 24/7, for the next few decades. 

The fossil fuel industry is responsible for climate change among other environmental disasters and is now being linked to accelerating the spread of the current pandemic. On top of all of this, the high volatility and economic vulnerability of the fossil fuel industry is proving itself now more than ever. 

We know we need to phase out of using fossil fuels to avoid events of catastrophic levels, so it seems like the first step toward this is denying all new fossil fuel project proposals including the Danskammer power plant. We need to say no to Danskammer and yes to a just transition to a renewable energy future in New York State. 


Eric Wood


New Paltz, New York