Clean air advocates protest State study on Stericycle

- SALT LAKE CITY (ABC 4 Utah) - Clean air advocates protested Thursday on Utah’s Capitol Hill. They object to a recent State study they believe downplays the link of cancer cases in Davis County to pollution from medical incinerating company Stericycle.

The study they're protesting looked at a possible connection between pollution from Stericycle and cancer cases in Bountiful, West Bountiful, Woods Cross and North Salt Lake. Needless to say they weren't impressed with the results.

"The incinerator should be shut down," said Alicia Connell, Communities for Clean Air.

People protesting medical waste incinerating company Stericycle aren't happy with a new State study. It found no environmental links between Stericycle's emissions and higher cancer rates found in people in North Salt Lake.

"We do sharply disagree with the conclusions that were drawn and how this study can be interpreted," said Dr. Brian Moench, Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment.

Thursday in front of the Governor's office, clean air advocates refuted the study's suggestion that the cancers could have been avoided by "practicing healthier life choices."

Alicia Connell believes four North Salt Lake children with cancer in seven years is no coincidence.

"What 4-year-old is out smoking and not living a healthy life style, and what mom isn't putting sun block on their child when they go outside, these kids did not give cancer to themselves," said Connell.

Meanwhile, the company is seriously considering moving its business out of North Salt Lake and into an isolated area in Tooele County. The proposed site would be on State lands in Skull Valley just off I-80 on Rowley Road, likely between the highway and the US Magnesium plant.

"It's just out in a deserted area that there would be no possible way for residential area to move in there, or almost any neighbors of any kind," said Tooele County Commissioner Bruce Clegg.

Commissioner Clegg believes it would add tax revenue and jobs to the county. Although protestors are pleased Stericycle is likely moving out of North Salt Lake, they'd rather it not reopen its doors anywhere.

"There's a study that shows an Indian reservation in Canada was being affected by having dioxin in their breast milk from 300 miles away," said Connell.

It appears protestors voices are being heard, the Governor is agreeing to meet with people living in North Salt Lake on February 26th.

Follow Brian Carlson on Twitter: @briancarlsontv

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