The residents of East Baton Rouge Parish must realize the implications if the DEQ approves the permit for Tubal-Cain Marine Services barge-cleaning facility.

The 33-acre tract proposed to be built is 2 miles from Brightside Drive on River Road. It will be less than 3 miles from LSU, the Louisiana School for the Deaf and the potential site for the THRIVE school. Farr Park’s 297-acre Equestrian Center offers guided trail rides, therapeutic riding, rodeos and an RV campground with 180 sites. BREC and the Downtown Development District are improving the levee for walkers, joggers and cyclists. The TCMS facility will ruin this pristine patch of our historic River Road, allowing more industry to build.

A pair of bald eagles have nested in the area for six years. Their nest, on the Mississippi River for three years, is the most photographed and watched in Louisiana, allowing a view from the levee that hundreds, perhaps a thousand, have enjoyed. They have raised two eaglets each year. TCMS is building in front of the nest with lights, noise and pollution. The eagles may abandon that nest in 2016. What a shameful outcome that would be for those who love the accessibility to our national bird in a wild, yet urban setting.

The roads for the trucks hauling chemicals to this site and from this site are through LSU, residential and mixed-use areas without easy accessibility to I-10. The infrastructure is not equipped for the company, much less than the traffic now!

TCMS and the DEQ are being slick with residents by way of being a “minor source” pollutant. They have plans to grow as big as their Texas site with 200 employees. At first, it sounds like a good thing, until we ask how long will they stay being a “minor source” and not become a “major source”?

Louisiana Environmental Action Network will be hosting a forum, organized by the LSU Superfund Center, Community Engagement Program on LSU’s campus July 7. See their website for more information: www.leanweb.org.

On July 14, DEQ will be holding a public hearing, not a public meeting, for the uninitiated. If you cannot attend and want your comments heard, go to their website: http://www.deq.louisiana.gov . Closing comments must be in by July 16.

Barbara Kincannon

photographer

Lafayette