Recreational Fires Must Be Eliminated

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The air is smoky from burning wood in North St. Paul, MN, almost every evening. It is a nightmare. What used to be a nice place to live has become a living hell.

WARNING: If you buy a house in North St. Paul, MN, you will regret it! It may be the biggest, most expensive mistake you ever make. You will breathe smoky air almost every day of your life in this town. This is not an exaggeration. The wood smoke in this town gets heavy and gets heavy often. When you want to get out of this dump of a town, how many people do you think are going to want to buy a house in a city where heavy air pollution every night is normal and clean air is rare? This blog gets thousands of visitors every year. The word is out: North St. Paul is a horrible place to live!

Fresh air is very rare around here. If you are considering moving to North St. Paul or buying a home here, I strongly recommend that you do not do it no matter how good of a price you get. The only way you will be happy in this town is if you love breathing smoky air almost every day. North St. Paul, MN, is a horrible place to live because of the smoky air!

Burning wood, grass, leaves, paper, cardboard, and sometimes plastic, construction materials, and chemicals, if it is combustible it gets burned in North St. Paul and you are going to breathe it.

The air was smoky 25 out of 31 evenings in July 2009. We had 37 hours of continuous wood smoke in the air Aug. 29th - 31st. There was wood smoke in the air 19 consecutive evenings from Aug. 21st to Sept. 8th. It rained heavily on Aug. 20th, providing the only relief we got from wood smoke for almost three weeks.

Is this a good way to live? No. It is a horrible way to live. Take it from someone who knows. Breathing smoky, polluted air every day is misery.

Every day in this city several people are having recreational fires. Every evening the air is filled with the stench of burning wood. I am one person sick and tired of breathing smoky air every day. Is it too much to ask to be able to breathe fresh air in your own home?

Who is responsible for this wood smoke nightmare? The four city council members are responsible. Council members Jan Walczak, Bob Bruton, Terry Furlong, and Dave Zick have refused to do anything about this wood smoke problem. They don't care if you have a child with asthma. They don't care if you have to live like a shut-in because the air is so polluted. They don't care if your sinuses burn because the wood smoke is so heavy.

Our four Council members have defended the rights of a small percentage of households to burn wood daily over the rights of all the rest of us to breathe.

You have no right to breathe under Walczak, Bruton, Furlong, and Zick. Burners have the right to burn wood 49 hours a week recreationally. The rest of us have no rights at all.

If you are considering purchasing real estate in the city of North Saint Paul, Minnesota (55109), factor this blog carefully into your decision. Buying a home in this city means that your kids will breathe smoky air while playing in the yard almost every day. Your baby will breathe smoky air in her crib should you leave the windows open around your house. If you leave your windows open you will wake up in the middle of the night choking on smoky air.

Perhaps worst of all, your utility rates will be high because you will have to run the air conditioner instead of leaving the windows open on a cool summer evening. You have no other choice because almost every night the air is too smoky to breathe in this city. Consider this blog your warning.

North St. Paul, Minnesota, is a wonderful community other than the wood smoke. If we could restore fresh air like we used to enjoy, life would be happy again. But that is not going to happen any time soon.

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Saturday, August 18, 2012

Another brutal, smoky hell of a night. 14 hours of smoke in the air and counting!

It was another brutal, smoky hell of a night here in North St. Paul, MN.  It is 6 AM as I write this and the air is still too smoky to open the windows.  One or more of last night's burners left their wood smoldering all night long.  This is common for weekends and happens sometimes during the week as well.  I can go out for a walk on a Sunday morning and find smoldering bonfires all over without even trying to look for them.

One of the area yard waste burners started burning yard waste before 4 PM.  I don't know what time he started, but his burning was going strong at 4 PM.  His yard waste smoke came and went with the breeze and was heavy at times, so we could not open the windows.  Within an hour or so asshole frequent burner started burning.  It's not even 5:30 PM and two homes in the area are producing huge clouds of smoke.  The smoke only got heavier as the night went on as bonfires started.  By nightfall the smoke pollution was off the charts.  The smoke was so heavy you could not stand to breathe the air.  With smoke this heavy, you step outside for 30 seconds and your clothes reek of smoke so badly you need to change.  A couple minutes of breathing air this polluted leaves your sinuses burning.  Your lungs resist your attempts to inhale in an effort to protect your body against the heavy pollution.

It's been 14 hours of nearly constant smoky air as I write this.  Maybe in a couple of hours we will be able to open the windows and enjoy a few hours of fresh air before the burning starts again.  If we are lucky.

If the air isn't smoky at night, that is unusual in North St. Paul.  The smoke pollution isn't limited to our area, it is all over the city.  North St. Paul is like a giant campground with bonfires burning all over the place.  When you find one smoky area, you will not have to go more than a tenth or two-tenths of a mile to find another home that is burning.  Sometimes several homes on a block are burning at the same time.

None of our neighbors burn.  The smoke blows in from down the street or burners a quarter mile away or more.  The smoke goes wherever the wind takes it.  If the smoke is heavy a distance away, how heavy must it be for the poor souls living next door to the burner?

I first started complaining to the city about the smoke pollution in spring of 2008.  I have had no contact with anyone from City Hall since fall 2009.  The city will not do anything about the heavy pollution that has been plaguing our city for the better part of ten years now.

The smoke isn't the only problem in North St. Paul.  The whole city is going to shit.  Rundown properties are everywhere you look.  You might think the homes are vacant, but they are not.  The homeowners just don't care anymore and don't bother to maintain their properties.  North St. Paul's schools are not good either.  If good schools are important to you, buy a home in another city.

Do you want to live in a city like this? North St. Paul is a horrible place to live. If you buy a home in this city you will regret it!  You will curse the day you moved to North St. Paul, MN.  Take it from someone who knows.  North St. Paul sucks!

North St. Paul is hell on earth.  You have been warned.

Update:  The wood smoke cleared enough to open the windows at 7:30 AM making fifteen-and-a-half hours we had to keep the windows closed.  There was very little breeze this morning when I went for a walk.  I found one smoldering bonfire a tenth of a mile to the northeast and another smoldering bonfire a quarter mile due west.