Monday, January 16, 2012

The Air Stinks

I am fed up with the stinky air here, where I live near all the industrial plants. It's disgusting many nights. I can't even breathe in sometimes. It's gotten much worse, too. There was a different even more awful smell tonight, coming with the wind blowing from the south. Probably a 34th street plant emission smell. I wanted to puke. I came inside and wrote a letter to the editor.

I was also dismayed by the lackluster response I got from the DEQ. I then contacted the EPA who said it's the DEQ's job. What a paper shuffle government we have. I don't know what these industries dump into the air at night, probably hoping everyone's in bed and won't smell it. It's scary.

There's seems to be nobody minding the store either, as far as emission monitoring.

Here's the letter I wrote:

The Air Stinks

I noticed the air at night, when the air is still, or fog is thick, would sometimes reek of piercing chemicals, a few years back. This smell is like ammonia mixed with other sharp odors, and makes me run back inside. The frequency of this smell in the air is increasing. I asked the city what that stench might be. I asked the DEQ, too. I don’t think it’s healthy to breathe air full of chemicals.

Tonight it’s a different stench. Wind is blowing, from the south. I know those industries along 34th and Ferry and back in there supply jobs, but I wish it could be done without filling the air with chemicals at night.

I think this district where I live, near all the industrial plants, might be better inhabited by people without a sense of smell who are already terminally ill.


The city had told me they thought the smell likely to be an offshoot industry of Wah Chang, a well known Albany company that makes titanium metals for rockets, airplane parts, the aerospace and defense industries. The DEQ told me it was more likely Absorbant Technologies or OR Freeze Dry. They claim to get the most complaints about the smell from Absorbant Technologies. I don't have any idea if it is any of these or all of them.

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