Brunswick residents and visitors will soon breathe easier as a result of a long overdue solution to improve the health and well being of our community.

The Merrymeeting Greens, local members of the Maine Green Independent Party, extend thanks to state Senator Stan Gerzofsky for sponsoring LD 439, “An Act to Prevent Excessive Idling of Passenger Trains.” As a result of his initiative, the Maine Legislature’s Transportation Committee has directed the Northern New England Passenger Rail Authority, a public transportation authority created by the Legislature, to install a Wayside Power System in Brunswick.

A Wayside Power System makes it possible for a train’s large diesel engines to shut down when temperatures are above 45 degrees F and idle at at reduced rate when temperatures are below 45 degrees F. This saves a considerable amount of fuel, up to 25 gallons an hour. The cost savings will benefit all train riders and taxpayers.

Noise and vibrations will be decreased as well. But the biggest benefit to people in downtown Brunswick will be the reduction in the release of cancer-causing pollution into the air we breath.

Preventing excessive diesel exhaust is a transportation development we can all celebrate.

Fred Horch and Mary Heath, on behalf of the Merrymeeting Greens Brunswick