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"Worried to Death," Washington Resident Tells CBC About Hosting Canexus Chlorine During Olympic Games

Chlorine facility in North Vancouver

On CBC yesterday, BC Almanac's Mark Forsythe asked Tom Biecker, of Belmont, Washington how the residents of the bucolic village are coping with news that the Canexus Chemical Plant of North Vancouver has a proposed plan to park 50 chlorine cars there during the Olympic Games.

Biecker said his wife, Holly, has "been throwing up," since learning that the storage facility will apparently be built in the Biecker's back yard, 150 feet or so from their beloved farmhouse.  "She can't sleep.  She's sick to death. She's worried to death."

Forsythe remarked that Biecker had contacted local media in Vancouver when he had learned of Canexus's proposed plan. "We hard that over the TV news."  Biecker said he went to his computer after hearing about it on the six o'clock Spokane television news and googled chlorine.  He found the Vancouver Observer's  article, "Canadian Counter Terrorism, the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics, and the World's Deadliest Chemical," he told Forsythe, and then he contacted VO. 

"I was when we heard about it, didn't know what to do but I went to the computer and saw something on the VO about some chlorine gas and I read it and it had to do with this Canexus company.  And so I emailed them and they called me up and she asked me if she could print some stuff. I called people back in Washington, D.C. Yesterday I had at least 8 calls from Washington, DC in the federal level.  So it's brought a lot of attention to some people."

We will be posting the entire interview on our YouTube channel later today.  Go to YouTube/VancouverObserver and find all of our videos there.  You might also be interested in viewing the chlorine video we shot last summer.  In it, I interviewed commentator Chris Shaw and reporter Megan Stewart about our in-depth investigation into chlorine and the Winter Olympics. 

Shaw was contacted by Fred Millar, a hazardous chemicals consultant in Washington, D.C., after Millar saw Shaw on television, speaking about how security representatives had been interviewing him about his activities.  

 Millar said he believed that transporting chlorine posed a dire threat to the residents of Vancouver and suggested Shaw and VO look into why the plant was closing for the Winter Games. 

Millar raised the compelling and urgent question of why Vancouver would choose to protect the city for the games, and not choose to protect the city before and after the games. 



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