In response to the April 29 Point of View “Time to modernize burdensome rules ...”: The Bonner Bridge was affected by the federal NEPA, so the state State Environmental Protection Act did not slow it down at all. This is just false alarmism.
Furthermore, the Chamber of Commerce and the (bad) jobs-at-all-costs crowd should realize that we create the most jobs with sustainable development, not ruthless exploitation.
Our beautiful and clean environment – rivers, oceans, forests, air – attracts people and jobs to North Carolina.
Plus North Carolina has a huge environmental consulting, natural resource management and parks and recreation sector that creates more jobs than gutting all environmental rules ever will.
At N.C. State, we must have more than a thousand students who are majoring in environmental engineering, parks, recreation, natural resources, forestry, wildlife, agroecology, environmental technology, sustainability and more. They graduate and get good jobs with good salaries, help plan development carefully, manage and protect resources and make North Carolina an even more beautiful place to live.
So let’s get real and create a sustainable, beautiful and attractive state based on our environmental strengths and reasonable rules, not gut our environmental laws so we can have unmitigated pollution, eyesores, bad health and bad jobs.
Professor, Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources, N.C. State University