No matter how you pronounce "nuclear."
What started in Kaleforniya twenty some years ago has leapt across the country to Washington, D.C. They have - yep, you guessed it - banned hazardous material shipments through the City.
They think the decision is something new. Guess again. It's not.
Even so, it remains to be seen whether the trend will continue.
The railroad industry isn't happy. A press release on that site noted: "Rerouting does not eliminate the overall risk, but merely shifts it to other communities." Statistics cited by the Association of American Railroads point to a 0.003 accident rate.
The AP quoted Representative Edward Markey, D-Mass., "who said other cities will follow Washington's lead if the federal government doesn't order hazardous shipments rerouted from crowded neighborhoods," wrote reporter Leslie Miller this past Friday, February 6, 2005, on FindLaw.
So, if we can't ship hazardous materials in, around or through cities, where does that leave us? At a minimum, it's likely costs of transport will increase. Otherwise, the materials may just stay where they are.
What if we take the argument to its logical extreme and protect everyone from nearby shipments of hazardous materials? Would the economy grind to a halt because we can't manufacture goods that require hazardous materials? What about hazardous materials that result from manufacturing?
Even if we develop onsite hazardous materials programs, they typically require other hazardous materials for the treatment process.
What's our solution? Oh, I forgot.
But first make sure I can watch the Super Bowl today on my television. Never mind that it required hazardous materials to make, I want to see who wins.