Two years ago, I read an article by the Clean Air Task Force, "The Toll From Coal." It said Ocean City had the 14th highest mortality/morbidity of more than 500 communities downwind from a coal-burning power plant in the United States. I tried my best to alert the citizens about this health issue, but the people were unreceptive to the message or the messenger.

Now the politicians and corporate shills are trying to convince the public that conversion of the B.L. England to natural gas and the associated gas-pipeline scheme must be supported. Natural gas will be clean energy, not dirty energy like coal, they say.

Suddenly the fight against coal and for gas is supposed to matter to the citizens who could care less when coal was being burned.

Propaganda from the South Jersey Gas Co., B.L. England and their political enablers is now in full throttle for bringing fracked gas to the plant for it to burn 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

The health impact from gas emissions - ultrafine particles, or UFPs - is being censored. As a physician, I have studied this extensively.

I believe that if B.L. England, which right now burns coal only 30-40 days a year, is converted to gas used 365 days a year, the morbidity/mortality risk to Ocean City will be significantly higher than its 14th rank with coal.

When the Clean Air Task Force publishes the danger to people in Ocean City from gas emissions, real estate values will plummet. And seeing residents wearing gas masks should not surprise anyone paying attention.

DR. STEVEN FENICHEL

Ocean City