On the George Washington Breathing Project: April 18, 2008 (Special Investigative Report)
In which The Gay Recluse rather quickly gets lung cancer.
Date of Photographs: April 18, 2008
We’ve noticed that almost every chimney in Washington Heights is spewing thick, black smoke these days.
It’s definitely a lot worse than it’s ever been, which leads us to ask: Does it have anything to do with the rising cost of oil?
Answer: Yes, pretty much.
Check out these minutes from the March 6, 2008 Community Board 12 Meeting:
HEALTH & ENVIRONMENT COMMITTEE MINUTES – March 6, 2008
COMMITTEE MEMBERS PRESENT: Steve Simon, Isaiah Bing, Martin Collins, Beatrice Hall, Pamela Palanque North and Matt Chachere (Public Member).
GUESTS: Harry E. Mayer, DEP; Ana L. Parks, WEACT; Maria Lizardo, Northern Manhattan
Residential smoke – Committee had asked last month why CD 12 had highest # of such complaints (37) in Manhattan in December. Mayer reported that DEP took 176 samples from apartment building boilers to check on quality of oil and will have results of tests in a few weeks.
From the February minutes:
Simon: Why did CB 12 have highest # of residential smoke complaints (37) in Manhattan in December?
Mayer: Smoke complaints probably result from poor quality oil. Inspectors find that dirty oil or waste oil is mixed with clean oil, or that boilers are not calibrated. He agreed to check on past complaints in CD 12 to see if this is a consistent pattern here.
Bing: More enforcement is needed on this issue. Supers don’t have #6 boiler licenses. Boilers have poor combustion controls. Many boilers in this community are 50 years old; lifespan is only 25 years.
Mayer: We can help supers calibrate boilers. DEP’s goal is to correct problem, not just issue Notices of Violations. We’ll come down hard on landlords who don’t make repairs.
Residents of Washington Heights: When you see this, call 311 and report the shit!
The oily black smoke of 100-year-old boilers disperses daily across the rooftops in Washington Heights, heedless of those who suffer from pneumonia, asthma and tuberculosis. Officials and politicians? Not even footnotes in this story, which is about the aggregation of capital and the relentless rise of the metropolis.
–The Gay Recluse, 9/29/07
Filed under: Capitalism, Disease, Government, GWB Project, Health, New York City, Politicians, Sickness, Technology, The Gay Recluse, Washington Heights, Weather | 2 Comments
Tags: Boilers, Community Board 12, Dirty Oil, Lung Cancer, New York City DEP