Make Boca Grande quiet again … redux

August 25, 2017
By Marcy Shortuse

To the Editor:
Thanks for all the verbal support received concerning leafblower noise and health hazards. Remember … if daily and weekly leafblowing were done every other day and week, noise and pollution would be reduced by 50 percent immediately!
Speaking of pollution, here are some “fun” facts: All four-stroke engines fire ALL of their cylinders once every 720 degrees (two revolutions). I call this one combustion displacement cycle, because volumetric engine displacement, (an example would be 6 liter, 350 cubic inches, etc.) occurs. Therefore, a 350 cubic inch engine at a 700 rpm idle has 350 combustion/displacement cycles each minute.
350 cubic inches = 0.2 cubic feet multiplied by 350 = 70 cubic feet of atmosphere (that “stuff” we breathe all day, every day) that is processed (and not in a good way) every minute the engine idles.
70 boxes, 1 foot x 1 foot x 1 foot of polluted exhaust, enters our atmosphere!
Whilst enjoying coffee and doughnuts downtown at 8 a.m., do you ever wonder why things don’t smell quite so sweet? Consider three large trucks idling at 1,500 rpm for 15 minutes each day. The average 450 horsepower six cylinder diesel engine displaces eight liters (0.26 cubic feet). Take 1500 rmp divided by 2 = 750 combustion/displacement cycles per minute. 750 multiplied by 0.26 cubic feet equates to 195 cubic feet of exhaust per minute. Multiply 195 by three trucks and you get 585 cubic feet per minute. Multiply 585 cubic feet per minute by 15 minutes total run time and it equals 8,775 cubic feet!
Couple these facts with ever-increasing bridge crossings, and it is easy to understand why this little island is awash in exhaust.
So please, everyone, ask yourself this: Does an     engine that idles while doing no actual work make this planet a better place? Or not? After all, this IS the only planet we have and diesel exhaust IS rated as a Group 1 carginogen.
John Foster
Boca Grande