Letter: Railroad museum plan left out pollution impact

Posted
To the editor:

In his economic analysis of the extreme model railroad museum ("Grand plans in North Adams," Sept. 1), Stephen Sheppard anticipates that the museum will attract between half a million and three quarters of a million non-local visitors a year to North Adams.

How many cars will that mean, in a region without passenger train service and infrequent bus service? How much carbon dioxide will those cars emit in a year? While the carbon emissions might be thought of as an "externality" in any economic analysis, the reality is that they add to the rapid poisoning of our planet.

So far, I haven't heard or read of any proponent of the museum showing any concern over the project's likely environmental degradation. Why not put the museum on hold until the rail passenger service that was ended in 1958 is restored?

Maynard Seider,

Philadelphia, Pa.

The writer is professor emeritus of sociology, MCLA.

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