I’ve been following with considerable interest the unfolding story revolving around the noise at the Navy’s Outlying Field Coupeville. Emotions and reactions are strong, with one side dividing the island into pro-Navy and anti-Navy camps, even boycotting some businesses, and the other side threatening legal action.
Let’s consider the real source of the problem, which is not the Navy, the outlying field, mission readiness, support for our troops or patriotism. It’s noise. Noise is a huge stressor, impacting not only quality of life but health and well being. Since it’s the noise from the new Growlers that is the issue, can we focus on reducing the noise from the source? Can the Growlers be retrofitted to be quieter? The amount of noise they produce was a design flaw right from the start, and it needs to be addressed, not only for Coupeville residents but for all inhabitants wherever they are deployed. This would involve engaging the military and federal government, but is it not the real, permanent solution to the problem, and one that won’t needlessly divide our community here on Whidbey?