Portland’s “peaceful protesters” use fears of environmental contamination & COVID in complaints against use of tear gas
“Midwest Burning Man” has devolved into “Northwest Burning City”
How effective has the federal agents’ tactics against the Portland anarchist mob been?
One clue that federal forces have been managing the mob it faces daily well is that the leftist protesters are now claiming that federal decontamination of properties after their antics may be polluting the municipal water system.
Oregon environmental regulators are requiring the city of Portland to test stormwater around the federal courthouse and parts of downtown, citing the “unprecedented amount of tear gas” used by local and federal law enforcement agencies since May.
The Department of Environmental Quality sent a letter Thursday to Portland’s Bureau of Environmental Quality outlining its expectations. The city must send a monitoring plan to state officials within the next three weeks describing how it will monitor for specific heavy metals and chemicals that regulators believe are likely associated with CS gas, a strong form of toxic tear gas used against protesters for months.
City officials said they are aware of the letter and are working in conjunction with the state to do more than just monitor for the roughly half dozen metals required by the state. Diane Dulken, a spokesperson for the sewer and stormwater agency, said Portland is working to “prevent the pollutants from getting into the Willamette River.” She said the agency “regularly” tests for contaminants at locations along the river but will now test specifically near the courthouse, two public parks and Justice Center due to the extensive tear gas used there.
But Portland also raised an alarm bell: It doesn’t know much about tear gas or its residue, and it said those materials are likely already in the sewer system. Dulken noted that tear gas residue is in the trees, on the ground and likely throughout the area near the courthouse and justice center, which has been the centerpiece of nightly protests for months.
“Maybe these materials aren’t hazardous, maybe they are,” Dulken said. “We’re researching that. There isn’t a lot of information.”
I would suggest that if the leftists were so worried about tear gas and the environment, they would truly assemble peaceably. However, leftists are only interested in a clean environment when it can be weaponized.
However, in 2016, when they protested against economy-enhancing pipelines that will make petroleum transportation safer while providing jobs, the progressive activists staged “Midwest Burning Man” and generated tons of garbage that was truly an environmental threat. Now, in 2020, the left has organized “Northwest Burning City.” Good job!
It is clear that there is a search for an angle to inhibit the ability of federal agents to respond with one of the most effective crowd-control tools in their arsenal.
After video surfaced of federal agents hosing contaminants off of the Mark O. Hatfield federal courthouse—where tear gas and pepper spray have been deployed—the Portland Bureau of Environmental Services said the discharge technique is “not permissible” and that the city agency is currently investigating.
NOT allowed – hosing off contaminants into the street and to storm drains,” BES wrote in a tweet responding to a video posted of agents hosing off contaminants. “There is no permit because this kind of discharge is not permissible.…We do not expect to have additional information for some time as we continue this investigation.”
The impact that chemical riot control agents like CS gas and pepper spray have on the environment are largely unknown. The city’s stormwater flows into the sewer system.
Thank you all for your video reports. There is no permit because this kind of discharge is not permissible. As we look into these incidents, here are a few general rules for preventing pollution while cleaning sidewalks and other pavement:
— BESPortland (@BESPortland) July 29, 2020
NOT allowed – hosing off contaminants into the street and to storm drains. Instead, pollution prevention practices must be in place:
— BESPortland (@BESPortland) July 29, 2020
Clearly, Portland applies different environmental protection standards to different groups of people. Demonstrators can ignite fireworks and spray-solvent containing paint with abandon. But federal agents can’t clear an area after responding to a mob.
As an added bonus, the left is also throwing in a little COVID-fear to stem the use of tear gas.
Dr. William Lambert is an environmental epidemiologist with Oregon Health and Science University and Portland State University’s School of Public Health who studies the effects of air pollution on respiratory infections. He said exposure to tear gas can promote infection and the transmission of COVID-19 in two different ways.
“It’s a double whammy effect if you will. First off, the use of a strong irritant like that, that causes coughing, sneezing, people to remove their masks because of the extreme discomfort will release aerosols into the air and to the people around them,” Lambert said.
So, if someone at a protest is infected, he said that person could infect someone else by coughing or sneezing near others as a result of being tear gassed.
If that is true, then I suggest that the “protesters” stop the types of activities necessitating the use of tear gas. These thugs are the real polluters and super-spreaders. The good news is that these reports suggest Portland’s band of “peaceful protesters” are realizing they have bitten off more than they can chew.DONATE
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