2018-02-07 / Letters

Once gone, it’s gone forever

Dear Editor:

I am so comforted in knowing the flow and turbidity of our springs will be monitored. But what happens one morning when the monitor suddenly indicates reduced, muddy or no water? If there’s a decrease in the springs will Paul Revere suddenly ride to stop the mining or will it be the usual bureaucratic, wait and see...it’s just due to the season, then begin to prepare reports a few months later? How large a bond is U.S. Silica laying down to make up for the potential loss of our wells and springs? No springs equals no town water equals no sanitation; no drinking water for homes and businessness; no tourism.

How long will the town last then? How will we fight it? Our government will not be stepping in to help us (unless FEMA sends a few water buffalo and bottles of water). Experts already say they don’t know exactly how/where the channels get where they get. Our water could stop flowing suddenly from blockage somewhere underground due to mining activity and show up as increased flow in the Paw Paw, Ziler or Cacapon Warm Springs or anywhere else along the ridge. Our springs and wells are the closest to the disturbance so logically they will be the first affected.

Next it’s U.S. Silica saying, “It wasn’t us...blame the trucks rumbling by or a door slamming on Wilkes Street or your water flow has been decreasing for years...” and the mining continues while we dry up and blow away. Just another dead town along an American roadway. U.S. Silica may be the largest single employer but how many jobs and how much tax base will be lost if the town folds due to the loss of the springs? Fact that is not alternative....once our water is gone it’s gone forever and all the monitoring in the world won’t help us while U.S. Silica can simply mine on and blame it on an ‘Act of Covfefe.’

Carolyn Randell

Berkeley Springs

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valid points made here .

valid points made here . may i add one more point . the lag time a mining action resulting in the change of water condition can vary up to several months . the impact may not be reversed it may continue for decades or as stated forever