Instead, focus on building a clean, modern point of the mountain.
Utah’s Inner Harbor, if completed, will cause a health and environmental disaster. The inner harbor would greatly aggravate air pollution in the valley. It will also significantly increase dirty and polluting diesel truck traffic in North Salt Lake City. It will use a large amount of water which should be used to preserve the Great Salt Lake.
The Utah Inland Port Authority’s board of directors still hasn’t completed and released a health risk assessment that would identify the health issues the port would cause. The UIPA should not pursue any development until the study is published and evaluated by Salt Lake City and the Utah Legislature. Contrary to early promises, warehouses are not required to be built sustainably.
Utah’s Inner Harbor highlights the important issue of environmental justice. The inner harbor will be built in the northwest area of Salt Lake City which includes Salt Lake International Airport, the new Utah State Prison and the Union Pacific Railroad’s main east-west railroad. . This area is just north of Salt Lake City‘s poorest and most ethnically diverse population. They are the ones who will suffer the most from the increase in air pollution.
With the lowest unemployment rate of any state in the country (2.6%) and the huge new state and private industry technology complex planned for the peak of the mountain promising very well paying jobs, the inland port has no economic need.
Utah’s Inner Harbor is shaping up to be a giant mess that will make distributors of goods, like Amazon, chosen project developers, and some connected Utah politicians and consultants rich.
It is time to put an end to this misguided project. We can no longer afford to waste more money, time and effort on this reckless endeavor that will cause much disease in an area that deserves better.
William E. Fisher, originally from Cedar City, grew up in Las Vegas, Nevada. He received a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Southern Utah State College (now Southern Utah University) and taught English and American Government at Clark County School District, Las Vegas. He is now active in civic and political organizations in Salt Lake County.