Monday, November 25, 2013
Well the EPA strikes again! The last lead smelting from lead ore operation in the whole of the United States will cease operation on December 1, 2013. This will cost Missouri jobs as the plant is located in the heart of lead mining country in Herculaneum, Missouri. While the EPA states this was a company decision, the company stated it was not feasible to modify or build a new plant to the cost of $100 million to conform with new EPA regulations. Many are saying this is a great example of how the Obama administration and the EPA are implementing their agendas through regulation rather than constitutionally with legislation. Lead smelting to produce refined lead means higher cost for products still using lead - batteries, metal alloys and bullets. The Doe Run Company does recycle lead and will be able to continue to do so and other Missouri companies using Doe Run's products, such as Sierra Bullet in Sedalia, says there is enough lead supplies currently while recycling is still viable. And 100 million cars are imported every year so the supply of lead acid batteries is good for many years to come. But Missouri is losing jobs now as a result. Surely a more balanced economic approach could have been made to start reducing the use of lead to alternative metals and over time the need would have evolved and jobs would have been converted. But we live in the "now" generation and few are willing to let time help answer and solve our problems. Yes, lead is harmful if not handled properly but remains a very useful product. What's next? Regulation on cement production to satisfy the global warming crowd? So we stop using concrete in our manufacturing and construction to satisfy a debatable theory? Probably. Yet all the while those working to reduce cement's greenhouse gas footprints are clamoring for safer homes against the natural disasters they say are worse due to GHGs. Here is your cake folks. Oh, you want to also eat it? Nice try. And so we can wind this around to look at how complicated "compromising" has become and reveal the uncompromising zealotry we are dealing with.