Electric Ferries, Controlled Growth: Environmentalists Push Steamship Authority for Sustainable Future

Passengers aboard a Steamship Authority ferry on its way to Oak Bluffs. (Liz Lerner/CAI)

This summer, a Steamship Authority ferry will depart the terminal in Woods Hole 31 times a day. So on a recent Sunday morning, the surrounding area was packed with buses, taxis, and travelers sitting on luggage as they waited to board.

“So the buses are diesel. You can smell them a little bit,” said Doug Brugge, professor and chair of the Department of Public Health Sciences at the University of Connecticut. “And whether the ferry is the main concern, or the traffic is a bigger concern, is something that comes to my mind sitting here.”

The concerns for Brugge, author of, “Particles in the Air: The Deadliest Pollutant is One You Breathe Every Day,” revolve around the human health impacts of air pollution.

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