The little data that has been released shows that harmful metal particles are being released into the air.
Sims Metals has recently sent out another mailer to Pilsen residents claiming that the results from the air monitoring are positive. PERRO begs to differ.
In the first place the only data that has been publicly released is for December, January and February. No further data has been made available to the public. But this limited data does show that when the Sim shredder is in operation during the day, the level of particles in the air increases.
Does this increased level of particles in the air pose a threat to the health of those of us living around Sims?
That depends on who you ask. Sims says it doesn’t because it is below a certain limit. However, these particles are reported to contain lead, chromium, and manganese. Public health studies have shown that even low level exposure to these metals can, over time, have bad consequences for people’s health. There is, in fact, no safe level of exposure to lead. Exposure to manganese is also bad for health, increasing the incidence of asthma for one thing. Manganese seems to be the most prevalent contaminant that Sims is putting in the air.
PERRO continues to believe that Sims does pose a risk to the health of the people living and working in Pilsen. We stand by what we said in our previous communication.
In Pilsen, many industrial facilities have subjected the community to pollution for decades. This has led the EPA to designate Pilsen as an environmental justice community. PERRO feels that any additional pollution burden is unacceptable. Sims should stop shredding metal at its facility if it cannot eliminate all its emissions.