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  • William LaFreniere

    Would like to see a joint venture between WWU and a Mini-mill (Bellingham Waterfront)

    I would like to propose the development of a mini-steel rolling mill on the former GP property. There are a lot of scrap cars that have been exported to China to be melted into new steel. New steel mill technology uses electric furnaces to re-melt scrap. The problem is automotive scrap is painted, and mixed with various types of plastic. This material burns and caused pollution. Why not utilize the environmental training available at WWU to engineer and operate the pollution control portion of the mill? The operation could be a joint venture, and students from Western could work in a proactive manner to detect and develop the means to control emissions. One of the major gripes about the teaching of environmental science, is that it is normally utilized to control or limit industry. If environmental science was taught in the work environment, perhaps the students would get a greater grasp of the need to work to solve problems, rather than just work to penalize polluters. The steel industry in this country has been destroyed by foreign competition. End users of steel can no longer compete with foreign manufacturers because of the cost of importing foreign steel. The answer to this is to set up micro steel mills to serve local needs. Perhaps the Port of Bellingham could assist in setting up this venture. Thanks, Bill

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