Bulletin letters to the editor: 3M incinerator, appreciation for eventsRecent Bulletin letters to the editor.
Group pushes against 3M plan
In April 2009, 3M announced it was seeking to modify its existing air permit to allow non-3M regulated hazardous waste to be burned in 3M’s hazardous waste incinerator located in Cottage Grove. As residents, we felt our concerns were being marginalized by 3M, so we organized a group called the Coalition of Concerned Cottage Grove Citizens. Visit our website at www.coccgc.org.
We contracted Decision Resources to do a community survey to make sure the residents had the chance to express their opinion on this proposal to 3M, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) and elected officials of Cottage Grove. That survey showed:
– By almost 2 to 1, Cottage Grove residents oppose the proposal
– 35 percent are strongly opposed, while only 6 percent are strongly in favor
– If this proposal moves forward, less than half of the city residents would rate 3M favorably as a steward of the environment
– 85 percent of the residents have a favorable impression of the MPCA, but only 54 percent feel the MPCA has done a good job of regulating industrial waste products from 3M
Our coalition has contested 3M’s proposed permit changes at every stage of the process, and continues to do so. Recent articles and community leaders credit us with slowing down the approval process of the proposed 3M hazardous waste incinerator air permit and the 3M Cottage Grove site wastewater permit renewal. We are the only group that has publicly opposed the permit modification to bring in non-3M hazardous waste. We have challenged both the air and the water permits with the agencies on technical and regulatory issues.
So what has been accomplished? If the requested permit modification had been approved in June 2009, 3M could have brought in a minimum of 48 million pounds of non-3M hazardous waste into Cottage Grove in addition to what they already incinerate here. This number is based on 3M’s projected number of trucks, number of days, etc.
Our efforts have helped prevent this from happening and made this a healthier and safer community for all the residents, but especially for the children and people who already have respiratory issues.
Brian Quinnell, Trish Thompson & Bets Thorkelson
Thankful for help with event to benefit food shelf
St. Luke Lutheran Church recently held its 13th annual golf scramble and raised over $1,700 for the Friends in Need Food Shelf. Fifty golfers participated.
St. Luke would like to thank all who participated in making the event a success. A special thanks to our sponsors: Mike and Janelle Tucker of Tholen Plastics, Inc., Robb Johnson of Complete Contracting, Thrivent Financial for Lutherans, River Oaks Golf Course, Zywiecs Landscaping and Garden Center, Park Grove Bowl, Advanced Sportswear and Afton Alps.
St. Luke Lutheran Church
Help with garden tour appreciated
Thank you to everyone who visited the lovely gardens highlighted during the 15th annual South Washington County Garden Tour. Your participation helped raise over $6,500 to support youth-focused family counseling and community justice programs for area youth.
Our outstanding Garden Tour Committee produced another first class tour. Thank you to committee members Linda Carlson, Julie Close, Bernadette Johnson, Joanie Kobilka, Jenn Lanz, Kay Longtin, Debra Messinger, Annette Mullen, Myra Peterson, Jan Purcell, Gayle Schommer, Natalie Seim, Bonita Sindelir, Linda Tennis, Alison Walsh and Maureen Walton for all of the hard work you do to make this such a spectacular event.
The nine gardens on this year’s tour showcased a variety of organic fruits and vegetables, stunning perennials, water features, meandering paths and even a patio with a fireplace. A special thank you to our garden hosts, Duane and Mary Jane Heng, Paul and Cecilia McGarry, Mike and Kelly Pageler, Don and Michellene Arneson, Jon and Lisa Schommer, Tammy Diedrich and Gary Rieder, Geoff and Kathie Peterson, Sigrid Johnson and Leo Walding, and Guardian Angels Church Food Shelf.
Master gardeners Alison Walsh, Annette Mullen, Ellie Anderson, Gary Johnson, Joan Kobilka, Kathi McMahon, Margaret Rowland, Meg Johnson, Mia Naseth-Phillips, Michelle Roberts, Pat Donalds and Sara Gorski shared their expertise and answered questions at many of the gardens throughout the day.
The music and vocals of Men with Hope, Mike Murphy, The Glenrays, Jennifer Lane Ensemble, Inclinations and Yo Jimbo Jazz added to the allure of several gardens on tour.
Many of the gardens also featured a local artist or crafter. Displays included items by Duane Heng (turned and carved wood pieces), Steph Daily (soaps, cards and scarves), Elizabeth McEathien (notecards and prints), Bonita Berthiaume (botanicals and watercolors), Cheryl Fitzgerald (iron sculptures) and Becky McPeek (The Toad Lady).
We’d also like to thank all of our volunteers, donors and sponsors, the Linn Companies on behalf of their Holiday stores, and the Cottage Grove Cub Foods for their generous support.
Thanks again to all who contributed to the success of the tour. We truly appreciate your support of local youth and families.
Youth Service Bureau