Traverse City Record-Eagle

Our Views

December 12, 2013

Editorial: Relief petition starts at Frankfort

To the eight Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states that petitioned the federal government Monday to require nine upwind states to cut down air pollution emissions, a word to the wise: Save your breath.

Northwest Lower Michigan has been fighting the same battle for decades and has gotten absolutely nowhere. The city of Frankfort in Benzie County has often been cited for exceeding ozone standards and has even faced possible federal ozone sanctions.

This despite the fact that Frankfort is a city of just 1,300 or so souls perched on Lake Michigan that bills itself as the gateway to the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.

Frankfort — and Benzie County, for that matter - has zero pollution-causing industry. But virtually every summer, when pollution from power plants and factories in Chicago, Gary, Ind., and Milwaukee comes wafting across Lake Michigan, Frankfort gets a pollution warning and the feds threaten to curtail ozone-creating activity — like banning lawn mowers, maybe.

So to Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont: The line forms right behind Frankfort.

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