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Forks Biomass Boiler with Updates (Original letter at bottom)

Update October 2, 2009, (Forks biomass boiler bids and design)

Construction of the boiler was officially (again?) put out for bid yesterday. We'll see what develops.

What I really want to write about, however, is the design. For that, let me direct you to a Peninsula Daily News article from September 19, 2009, "Bids to be requested for Forks biomass boiler in October" where there is an architect's rendering of the design. (Sorry, I can't give you the page number for the hard copy).

Most noticeable is a 50 foot high cone-like structure.

"The design resembles a brick tower that harkens back to old-fashioned plants. The idea is to symbolically represent history while combining with the new green concepts and incorporating as much energy-saving concepts as possible."

The symbolism was not lost on this writer.

Imagine a eulogy given for an honorable man by the person who was the architect of his demise and also the executioner! The old shake mills which had burners like the stylized one in the rendering were not broken. But, somebody wanted to get rid of them. It was done through irrational emotionalism. It was evil and will lead to further evil.

This kind of thing is usual lately. There is a template or a model somewhere. On a larger scale, think about what is happening nationally. Look at the things we are told are in need of fixing (translate as "must be replaced") such as health care and the Constitution. When our freedoms are gone (and they will be if certain forces are successful), what kind of monument will we get to the past? We will, you know it. It will be one of those "teaching moments" complete with lies telling you how much better it is now. Just like with the new Forks biomass boiler ...

""There will also be a learning theme throughout the building to teach about the wave of the future with green energy conservation resources, as well as some of the history of the area."

The 50-foot tower will feature information on green energy to teach students and community members about the process and windows will give an outside glimpse of what the boiler looks like on the inside."

What visionaries are new leaders are!

I suppose I should be happy that the tower is going to be 50 feet high. I assume that will be the top of the 'chimney.' I wonder how that height was arrived at. I would be even happier if carbon monoxide were the principle combustion product.

For those still apprehensive about carbon monoxide ...

Update May 12, 2009

(Some links for material mentioned can be found below this update).

The Forks biomass project is a telling look into the state of local leadership. The school district's website at which the 'Request for Bids' information was posted is a pathetic example of inept or underhanded behavior. Go to it. It is confusing and misleading. Most eighth graders in my day could have done a much better presentation. (Remember --- these people are responsible for teaching the children). There must have been an alternate method for providing potential contractors with the information necessary to complete an intelligent proposal/bid despite the claim in the legal notice.

I also noticed that some of the original requirements by the school district as listed on the website suddenly disappeared from the site. A telling example was the request for a determination of the significance of the downdraft of emissions from the smokestack.

A February posting on the Forks Forum website was cause for new concerns. After previously indicating that 'co-generation' was a future possibility, we were told that it was a fact. Referring to responses by Mr. Fleck, the article, Forks serving as biomass pioneer, claims:

He said an add-on micro-cogeneration system is also part of the project. The mini-turbines would send electricity back in the PUD electric grid, providing an income stream for the schools.

The emissions from the existing heating system would also be significantly reduced, he said, providing a healthier environment on school grounds.

“It’s an innovative project in Washington state that can help us address some private sector needs while creating clean energy for kids in our schools,” Fleck said.

The language in the article is something I have been accustomed to seeing while looking into the whole carbon dioxide, 'global warming,' 'climate change' phenomenona. Is there a deceptive attempt to leave the reader with the impression that emissions will be reduced and the ones remaining will be cleaner? Please read it again. I would hope emissions from the existing heating system would be significantly reduced --- it is to be replaced, is it not? Or, has another 'gotcha' been added? Then, Fleck claims that the new source will create 'clean energy.' I dispute this. I am tired of seeing and hearing such a claim. In the main, there has just been a substitution of one kind of potentially toxic substance for another potentially toxic substance. The hard questions surrounding the issue of why the "environment on school grounds" would be healthier are never asked. How are emissions reduced if electricity will be generated in addition to heat? If a heavier emission will result, how will the "environment on school grounds" be healthier? The biomass plant is still to be built on school grounds.

If you read below, you may begin to think that confusion surrounds this project or at least, the reporting about it. That is a common technique these days. Add confusion and deception and hope for chaos. (By the way, confusion and chaos are the side effects of high concentrations of CO2). Who are these people? (They are the same ones who, out the other side of their mouths talk about 'carbon footprint,' 'global warming,' and 'climate change.' I'll ask again, "Who are these people?" (Reminder --- "cleaner" has been re-defined to mean "containing more carbon dioxide").

[Note: Although this applies to Forks, Washington, it contains material that impacts us all. Many of you may have suspected the connection to the ailments mentioned and may have thought through a reason. I hope to address this more in depth soon by providing my arguments explaining the connections more fully. COPD is a particularly interesting one that I just learned. It is supposedly two things, chronic bronchitis and emphysema. I thought we were going to get rid of emphysema when people gave up cigarettes. Wasn't chronic bronchitis called "smokers' cough?" It sounds as if COPD kills more people now than lung cancer used to. Why would that be when fewer people smoke, and those that do seem to do it outdoors?

I don't mention nuclear energy in the letter, but it is one of the solutions that I would choose. Try to imagine what things might be like if we had continued our nuclear energy program at a rate similar to the French. Would we be paying the high prices we are for fuel? Would we be wrecking the agriculture business and making the cost of food prohibitive? I believe nuclear power is a gift from God. If we ask His blessing, imitate His use, and proceed wisely, I believe He will be with us and for us. I believe fire was also one of His gifts. We have done none of those things with fire lately. In arrogance, we have corrupted His combustion products and put all on notice that this design is better and will create a better world. The evidence to the contrary is there and mounting. You may feel that you will squeak by. What about your kids? What about the honey bees?

I suspect the school authorities in Forks are being forced to accept the new boiler. I doubt if they are given an alternative. The so-called "experts" have been active. Forget what any expert tries to tell you. Rely upon your own intellect. Trust your nose. There is something fishy when, by fiat, the burning of wood (called "slash" or "waste") by property owners, loggers, and mills is declared bad, and by another fiat, that same wood (now called "biomass") is collected in one place and burned in the middle of a bunch of school kids and declared good].

Update September 27, 2008

Well, let us revise things once again. A legal notice in the Peninsula Daily News, September 24, 2008, page C10, reveals a call for bids on the Biomass Boiler has been made. The notice and the Quillayute Valley School District's website referred to in the notice add new data. (See www.forks.wednet.edu and click on QVSD Biomass Project button in the left margin).

It appears the project will not be voted on, nor will its financing. The total cost is to be limited to the one million dollars voted by the legislature. What was all that other stuff about the November bond? The size of the project seems to have been scaled down although the request for bids requires responding firms to include an "Assessment of the ability to incorporate micro-turbine cogeneration technologies while not significantly increasing operating staffing and fiscal requirements." No mention is made of the impact of additional pollution with 'cogeneration.'

From the documents at the website, it seems the boiler will be located ...

Update July 5, 2008

{I am again compelled to alter this. The information in the Spring "Legislative Report" (reported below) left things unsaid. The boiler is not a certainty. The issue will be decided November 4, 2008 in the General Election. Voters must approve a bond issue funding the boiler and other school construction.

Here is some additional information from the Forks Forum website. I don't have the date for this article or know if it was also published in the paper. The link still worked as of July 5, 2008 - - - "November Is The Month for Bond Issue Vote."

The biomass project involves the school district, the City of Forks, the Port of Port Angeles, and the Clallam County Economic Development Council. It appears to be no small undertaking. A "leadership team" for the biomass project includes Superintendant Diana Reaume of the Quillayute Valley School District (QVSD), Attorney/Planner Rod Fleck for the City of Forks, Commissioner John Calhoun for the Port Angeles Port, Member Dave Dickson for the QVSD School Board, Director of Maintenance Bill Henderson for the public schools in Forks, and President Patti Morris for the Clallam County Economic Development Council. Question - - - Do we call this "diluting responsibility" or "spreading the blame?"

My suspicion was confirmed. The intention is to make the system bigger than what is needed to heat the school(s). According to Mr. Fleck, there will be "micro-turbines that would generate electricity through the steam heat created by burning wood waste from cedar mills. The power generated would be sold to the PUD to boost school district coffers."

The project is not going to be small. Greed has entered the picture. Can't just heat the school when there is a chance to generate power and make some money selling electriciy too. Is the waste going to come only from cedar mills? I think not.

Another Forks Forum website article, "Meetings Held on Proposed High School Expansion Bond," which seems to discuss everything but the boiler puts the total cost of the bond at $18.4 Million. A third of this may be picked up by others and not included in the bond. Does it include the boiler? Will there be separate bonds? It is too bad if some good and needed things may also be included in the same bond vote. This is what happens when we place leaders and managers over us and look to the state and federal government plus other government agencies for help. Perhaps this is a clue as to how we get our lives back. Wouldn't it be wonderful if we cared about running our own lives and making our own decisions again? We would have our own "line item veto." Would we be trying to dilute our responsibility and spread the blame? Would we want to be "dumbed down?"

(I found another article a few days after this update. I'll let you judge if it adds anything. "Financial Side of High School Bonds Unveiled").

My advice is to send all of these people packing. There's always another time to hold a bond vote. If you can't make up your mind how to vote on the bond yet, at least find out how far from the school and in which direction the stack for the boiler will be. How high will it be? The higher the better for dispersal. How many tons of CO2 will the boiler produce each year? As a check, find out how many tons of wood will be burned each year (the weight before and after drying). What is the projected ambient CO2 level around the school? How about for near the boiler? How many trucks will be hauling the waste? How many daily trips to the school?

Remember, you will be taking an area source of 'pollution' (technically, a dispersed set of small point sources) and turning it into a larger point source. (For the portion that was burned the old fashioned way without a catalytic converter, I would argue that you will be converting a global source into a point source. Most of it was not CO2 when it left the burn site). Although I live down wind, it won't matter to me because everything will still be well dispersed by the time it passes by. If you must go ahead, I would prefer carbon monoxide emissions. (But, that would be breaking the law). If there were more particulates, would that help shade us from the sun's rays? Or, would it help trap heat and cause "global warming?" Now that we have incinerated the particulates in all of our other emissions, does it seem that the sun is hotter on your skin? (Could this contribute to "global warming?" If so, was it done on purpose)?

Go back and read about the school's previous encounter with CO2. Think about the old Rayonier mill in Port Angeles and the mill in Port Townsend (the latter is a 'Kraft' mill which on average make about a million tons of CO2 per year. Alagae are a carbon based life form. Think why the lakes around Port Townsend have a problem - - - and Hood Canal too). When pollution controls (more CO2 content was mandated) were added, many in the public turned against the mills. Think about how people turned against smoking when buildings were made airtight (held more CO2). Intolerance will probably increase in Forks. Imagine how the community will turn against wood stoves. Think of 'road rage' (more CO2 around roads) and what is happening on airliners that now provide less fresh air (and increased CO2).

Here's a new identity opportunity for Forks and slogan - - - "Vampires Welcome! Help us drive a stake through the heart of "Global Warming" and other CO2 nonsense. With our backs near the ocean, we woke up, started a 'tsunami of truth,' and saved our country." Kind of long, but you get the idea. You can develope a better slogan. Yes, you can}.

Update May 10, 2008

{I just read my Spring "Legislative Report 2008” from the three Democrats in our Washington State Legislature, 24th District. It necessitates a revision of my original letter to the people of Forks (below).

The portion of the report by Representative Kessler indicates that the boiler is a certainty. I had reported it as a possibility. Was that my error in reading the news report? Or, has the final decision to go ahead with the project gone unreported? (Apparently I was also misled by one of the school authorities). When such important decisions are being made, isn’t it usual to see “pro and con” arguments? I don’t think I missed reporting of the “cons.” They must have been nonexistent. Correct? Then, why?

Representative Kessler also says that the boiler was requested by the Quillayute Valley School District. I had believed it was being forced upon the schools. Usually politicians would like to take all the credit for something worthwhile. I get the feeling Kessler wants to distance herself a bit in case there are repercussions, a true "enabler."

The title of her report includes the words “Preserving jobs.” Within is a statement that the boiler will save the mills money because they will not have to pay to have the waste hauled "out of the area." She also stated that without the boiler, the waste would be added "to the solid waste stream." This seems a bit misleading. Wouldn't it have been added to chips from other, non-cedar, mills around Forks being sent to Port Angeles or Port Townsend for use as fuel? How much would that cost if there were value in the waste as fuel? The photo included with her piece appears to show small logs being processed through a chipper. It is not waste from cedar mills. We are also informed that eleven cedar mills are involved and 130 individuals. That's going to translate into a lot of burning near the kids, especially if more than waste, as the picture would indicate, is involved.

Representative Kessler gives the reason the waste cannot be burned at the cedar mills as in the past as being due to the clean air rules. Well, are these not rules that she and her cronies and like-minded types forced on us? Thus, it is not because of regulations but because of her and others. We could consider it a problem that was created by government, and then government comes along to save the day, supposedly. How many times have you seen this scenario? Has it ever helped? Also, please recall that "clean air" according to the regulations means that all the carbon must be converted to CO2. Thus, they were able to create another problem which they claim to be solving by hyping "global warming."

It is implied that the mill jobs would be lost without the boiler. I conclude that there is some extortion involved here. If you want to keep the mill jobs, you must agree to poison the school kids. There will always be some to request such a boiler under these circumstances. The government needs it, because someone might wise up if the children in Forks are not suffering from the same ailments as children in heavy road traffic areas. A way is needed to share the misery. Why else produce more CO2 when you claim to be opposed to it?}

Letter to the people of Forks

Dear People of Forks:

It was reported March 3, 2008 in the Peninsula Daily News, page A4, that Forks may get a “Biomass Boiler.” There are three potential problems.

One is the size. Since the boiler is to use wood waste from “saw mills” and “from the local mills,” there is an implication that a lot will be burned. I am inclined to think one mill would suffice. Also, it was stated that the boiler “would be powerful enough to heat both of the schools, as well as any new wing of the high school that could be built.” I also worry that this is just a first phase in expanding to a larger plant such as has been talked about in the past, one that would burn the waste from all of the mills and produce electricity.

The second problem is location. It should not be located very near the school even if of modest size. I see a problem in concentrating the combustion products. The mills are dispersed. When they burned the waste, the emissions were spread out. It would be wrong to now bring all the waste near the children (or anyone else) and burn it.

The third problem relates to the emissions controls. The new boiler would “… replace one which has no emissions controls.” What does this mean? I would have thought that people would have wised up by now. Stop for a moment and ask why, for example, the Port Townsend mill now bothers so many people and is making them sick. The old mills may have stunk, but they didn’t cause illness. It is the carbon dioxide, CO2, content of the “new” emissions that is the source of the problem. You should be able to discern that the claim of “reduced emissions” is a lie. They were only changed, not reduced.

Let me remind you that Forks has had prior experience with the problems CO2 causes. (See "Letter to Sam"). What would the new boiler do to the air outside of the school, which will then be drawn inside? Do you know that CO2 is one and one half times the weight of air and, although a gas, can be poured almost like a liquid, tends to go down, seeks the lowest areas, and does not readily disperse. This magnifies the problems of concentration and location. Instead of increased global temperatures, correlate the rise in CO2 with the rise in asthma, A.D.D., rage, Alzheimer’s, MRSA and other weird bacteria, obesity, fibromyalgia, algae (the toxic kind too), anxiety, depression, COPD, and more. There are many reasons for not believing “global warming,” (continue reading elsewhere on these webpages) and many for believing the other connections. ( My next duty is to expand on the connections. For now please see my initial "CO2 Related Ailments and Problems").

Carbon monoxide was “demonized” in order to seduce us into accepting the environmental madness that has been shoved down our throats. Monoxide is slightly lighter than air, tends to rise, and dissipates more quickly. It never was a threat outdoors, especially when the sources were dispersed. Ask yourself what harmful organism the low levels might have killed in the past. Also, it helps short-term memory.

Smoke was not a big problem. It now must be incinerated. You may not now be able to see what is left, but it contains even smaller particles. A further late thought here - - - I don't suppose anyone in Forks would want any more rain, but when I was a school kid, we were taught that dust and smoke particles were important in the formation of rain drops. It seems the people who want all smoke to disappear are also quite rabid about predicting drought. Just seems that way, doesn't it?

Donald L. Beeman, PMB 319, 136 E 8th St, Port Angeles, WA 98362

Copyright © 2008, 2009 Donald L. Beeman. All rights reserved.