Not in any way to diminish enforcement of local and state law, but the story about a cannabis grower operating diesel generators trampled basic laws of journalism by editorializing without regard for facts and details.

“…Central Coast Agriculture, illegally ran highly polluting diesel generators as a primary source of power …” Yet the reporter never offers any explanation of her choice of words “highly polluting” diesel generators, other than recitation of health effects data on the oldest diesel technology. In her mind apparently any diesel emissions are highly polluting, no need to explore that point further.

Looking at the image in the story, these newer rental units could have very well been Tier 4 generation diesel — equipped with advanced emission controls that reduced emissions to near zero levels. But that doesn’t fit the desired narrative here apparently.

Diesel generators provide a valuable source of electrical power when grid power goes out or is unavailable. It’s not the technology of choice for long term prime power due to cost, but don’t label and criticize a technology that can be legally permitted and safely used today in California.

Allen Schaeffer is executive director of Diesel Technology Forum.

Editor’s Note: The story concerned air pollution violations due to the grower’s use of diesel generators, as well as permit violations.


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