Thanks to reporter Karamagi Rujumba for his balanced view on the financial factors involved when retrofitting dirty diesel school buses ("Districts Largely Uninterested in Funds for Retrofitting Buses," Feb. 17). Cleaning up these polluters-on-wheels does have its pecuniary drawbacks. But we're not talking about paper vs. plastic here -- we're talking about the health of our most vulnerable citizens: our children.
Lawrence Korchnak, superintendent of Baldwin-Whitehall School District, says he hasn't yet made a decision for his school district, yet the 75 percent retrofit fund match from the Allegheny County Diesel School Bus Retrofit Program has been available for three years. Sounds like the decision has been made.
How do we tell our children? "Sorry, it costs too much to keep your air clean. Maybe in 30 years all the buses will be better." How many young couples have considered moving to Pittsburgh, only to turn away due to our terrible pollution levels?
Change is coming, and Pittsburgh can either lead the way or get run over by a fleet of retrofitted buses from other cities.
The writer is a member of the Group Against Smog and Pollution