Concerns Over Power Plant and Birth Defects

Concerns Over Power Plant and Birth Defects

Residents in Ladera Ranch, CA spent last week pleading with officials from the South Coast Air Quality Management to move a power plant that may invade their community.

The 48-megawatt plant is planned to be moved to an existing San Diego Gas & Electric substation and residents are concerned about the potential health risks the plant could cause.

Plant Causes Worry

The Wellhead Margarita Energy plant would reportedly serve 30,000 homes and is permitted to run 2,500 hours a year.

The people living in Ladera Ranch, which is a community consisting mostly of families, question why Wellhead isn’t choosing another site that wouldn’t be as threatening to humans.

“In these times of economic distress, we can’t leave,” says Maria Mendes, a teacher in Ladera Ranch. “Every year, I see packets of students with health problems. I would beg you to consider other possibilities. Put the power plant in another location.”

Plant Risky to Children

At the meeting, residents cited many health issues that have surrounded other similar communities with power plants nearby.

Among the major health issues inflicted on many of these communities are birth defects, a risk that has also been linked to power plants in several child health studies.

The proposed power plant would be just 700 feet from homes and very close to several elementary schools.

“You have an opportunity to do what’s right for people,” Doug Cook, who lives near the site, told officials. “You should be in the business to improve the life of people who live here, not threaten their children.”

(Source: OC Register)

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