Researchers look into community health impact of wood pellet production in rural Mississippi

By Danny McArthur
MPB News
May 15, 2024
Category: Health & Safety
Region: United States, US East

MISSISSIPPI — Burning wood pellets for fuel can help power energy and heating systems, and proponents of the practice say it’s cheaper than other fuel sources and low in moisture and ash content, meaning the wood pellets should burn cleanly. But researchers from Brown University in Rhode Island and Tougaloo College in Jackson, Mississippi, are examining if these wood pellet plants are harming the health of residents in the surrounding communities. …The study found that Mendenhall had less air pollution and less noise pollution than Gloster did. Erica Walker, at the Brown University School of Public Health, said the early findings are limited, and the universities plan to study Gloster long term. …“The strength of this is that we are beginning to actually put real data to the question of whether or not wood pellet manufacturing is harmful to the communities who live nearby,” Walker said.

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