Opponents of the proposed St. Lawrence Cement plant in Columbia County released a list of 177 businesses that oppose the company’s plan to build a new plant in the Town of Greenport. The list includes 14 businesses based solely in Dutchess County. The others are from Columbia. The document the business owners signed states ’’the overall scale, design, location and impacts of the St. Lawrence Cement facility proposed for Hudson and Greenport pose too great a risk of harming the health, quality of life and economic viability of our region, and therefore, it is not the right fit for our communities.’’
St. Lawrence is seeking state approvals to close its 40-year-old plant across the Hudson River in Catskill and build one with three times its capacity near the City of Hudson. The US$353m project has been controversial because opponents say it will mar the landscape and pollute the air. Overall, emissions of many pollutants will decrease once the old plant is shut down, and the company has altered plans to reduce the visibility of the structure.
’’We support the vast majority of businesses in our area, which are creating jobs without causing environmental harm or inciting controversy,’’ said Peter Jung, president of Friends of Hudson’s board. ’’By contrast, St. Lawrence offers only one new permanent job in exchange for major new blight and health risks.’’
’’We’re confident that as we get reviewed by all the government agencies, this project will be judged on its merits, and the merits of the project clearly benefit the region, both environmentally and economically,’’ spokesman for St Lawrence, Dan Odescalchi, said.