The Argus published my letter today! 10/11/18
Whether or not this Letter to the Editor gets published, I wanted to share it here.
I'm a member of the No Gas Here coalition. We're a group of concerned neighbors trying to stop Safeway Corp from putting a extremely large, 16 pump gas station less than 100 feet across the street from multiple schools, parks and homes. Since filing the Appeal in July, I've been active in a way that has made me a target for some pretty nasty comments. I've been called a NIMBY, a snowflake, a fear monger, and a sell out to local gas stations.
What I AM is a mom fighting for the health and well-being of her two young children, my one year old son and my 3 ½ year old daughter who will be attending McDowell Elementary next year, as well as that of all the other kids who attend the school or go to the baseball field right across from the proposed gas station.
I have sacrificed countless hours fundraising, updating social media and websites, attending city meetings, and coordinating volunteers.
I am a resident of Petaluma who is more and more disappointed in how things in the city are set up, but hopeful that No Gas Here is just the first step in helping shape Petaluma for the better.
In case you didn't get a chance to read it.
JoAnn McEachin on behalf of:
Friends of McDowell Elementary School, Little League children, and East Petaluma residents
1512 Sierra Drive
Petaluma, CA 94954
July 8, 2018
Petaluma City Council,
We, the undersigned, petition to appeal the decision by the Planning Commission to approve a building permit for a Safeway gas station on the corner of Maria Dr. and S. McDowell Blvd. Our objections are based on the following:
This project is only for the benefit of Safeway, not the community. Petaluma already has several gas stations - THREE in the area of this proposed site, including the Chevron where Safeway customers can get up to 20 cents off per gallon - and research has shown that, contrary to what Safeway would like us to believe, Safeway’s reduced gas pricing has not brought down the pricing of other gas stations nearby.
August 14, 2018
Dear Petaluma City Council members,
I am writing you in regards to the Proposed 16-bay Safeway fueling station on Petaluma’s east side. I am a toxicologist with the State of California and I have reviewed the relevant scientific literature on the Health Impacts of Gasoline and Fuel Emissions in children. Much of it is fairly recent, so you may not be up to date on the most current scientific findings regarding adverse health impacts and proximity to gas stations.
The US Environmental Protection agency (USEPA) classifies gas stations as point sources for benzene, a potent volatile carcinogen that is linked to cancer in children. Living next to a gas station (within 328 feet) quadruples the risk of acute leukemia in children and increases the risk of developing acute non-lymphoblastic childhood leukemia by 7 times, compared with children who don’t live near a gas station (Steffen et al., 2004). (Cancer is a leading cause of childhood mortality in the US, and leukemia is the most frequent malignant disease effecting children). Because benzene is a carcinogen, the World Health Organization (WHO) has determined that there is no safe level of exposure.
This was taken Tuesday August 14, 2018 at 5:00 pm. The wind is clearly blowing from the proposed Safeway Gas Station site towards the preschool.