To the editor:

Electric company MMWEC is forcing the construction of a fossil fuel power plant in Peabody with no public input. There was no movement to publish a CHIA report, a health impact statement from an independent state agency. We are diving headlong into developing this plant with no idea of its impact on our community.

When this plan was introduced in 2015, I taught environmental science at Bishop Fenwick High School (half a mile from the proposed location). I remember lecturing about how progressive and transparent Massachusetts was on environmental issues. Meanwhile, the plan for this plant was plotted in secret. MMWEC kept the public out of the loop for another six years.

It’s time to open an honest discussion of health risks. I need to know if this plant poses any risks to my family, colleagues, and students at Fenwick. And not just them. What about the low-income neighborhoods that are surrounding the plant? The health effects are potentially regional. There is no magical invisible barrier separating the plant from the adjacent Danvers properties.

Thirteen other towns are co-owners of this plant: Boylston, Chicopee, Holden, Holyoke, Hull, Mansfield, Marblehead, Russell, Shrewsbury, South Hadley, Sterling, Wakefield and West Boylston. If you live in one of these towns, ask your utility to leave this project. If you live on the North Shore, pressure your representatives to require a CHIA report. This affects all of us. We all want to keep a low electric bill, but are we willing to sacrifice our health?

Dan Saulnier


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