CLICK HERE for an amazing 14 minute tour by air, land and river of the Juniper Ridge State Landfill/Waste Mound, and how how the mound’s own waste leachate ends up in Penobscot River. Produced by Sunlight Media Collective
The incoming legislative session brings back LD 1639 An Act To Protect the Health and Welfare of Maine Communities and Reduce Harmful Solid Waste The bill could easily put an end to the disgraceful use of Maine as Permanent Dumpland of the Northeast. But will state legislative leaders stand up to the blandishments and threats of Big Waste? Below, read what the people told the Maine legislature back in May 2021, when the Environment and Natural Resources Committee last considered the bill Bill history and related documents
|Barrett, Ed||Lewiston||(41 KB)|
|Blair, Peter||Conservation Law Foundation||(243 KB)|
|Blanchette, Leonard||Brunswick Sewer District||(93 KB)|
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|Boulos, Rebecca||Maine Public Health Association||(210 KB)|
|Boyd, Wayne||Holden||(41 KB)|
|Bradford, Abigail||Environmental Priorities Coalition||(99 KB)|
|Bullard, Sam||Peace & Justice Center of Eastern Maine||(57 KB)|
|Cayer, Mark||Mayor of Lewiston||(47 KB)|
|Chase, Crystal||Chase Trucking||(188 KB)|
|Clark, Paula||Maine DEP||(230 KB)|
|Colihan, Dana||Portland||(1003 KB)|
|Couillard, Troy||TRC Trucking||(57 KB)|
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|Eshoo, Amy||350 Maine||(164 KB)|
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|Firmin, Scott||Portland Water District||(158 KB)|
|Gendron, Todd||Easy Rent-All Corp.||(32 KB)|
|Gilman, Ben||Maine State Chamber of Commerce||(127 KB)|
|Goldberg, Neal||MMA||(312 KB)|
|Green, Zeb||Skowhegan||(51 KB)|
|Grenfell, Trevanion||Unity||(41 KB)|
|Haskell, Timothy||York Sewer District||(111 KB)|
|Haynes, Mary||Norway, Maine||(41 KB)|
|Jackson, Anthony||Brewer||(13 KB)|
|Jeffers, Lincoln||Lewiston||(181 KB)|
|Leahey, Gregory||ReSource Waste Services||(486 KB)|
|Leithiser, Charles||Old Town||(157 KB)|
|Leslie, John||Orrington||(41 KB)|
|Lippincott, Bill||Hampden||(70 KB)|
|Lister, Hillary||Athens||(122 KB)|
|MacDonald, Amber||Holden||(41 KB)|
|Martinez-Alfonzo, Stephanie||Unity||(38 KB)|
|Mason, Garrett||Associated Builders and Contractors of Maine||(70 KB)|
|Merrill, Kelly||Skowhegan||(57 KB)|
|Mosley, Michael||Waterville||(56 KB)|
|Nichols, Sarah||Bangor||(594 KB)|
|Obomsawin, Mali||Sunlight Media Collective||(64 KB)|
|Oltarzewski, Diane||Belfast||(57 KB)|
|Peaslee, Travis||Lewiston – Auburn||(201 KB)|
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|sanborn, Lokotah||indian island||(141 KB)|
|Smith, Hunter||Sierra Club Maine||(101 KB)|
|Spencer, Ed||Don’t Waste Maine||(42 KB)|
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|Townsend, Eliza||Appalachian Mountain Club||(447 KB)|
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|Wade, Tim||Maine Water Environment Association||(116 KB)|
|Walker, Leroy||Auburn||(287 KB)|
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By Hillary Lister, for Maine Indymedia November 17, 2006
Over 1 Million Pounds a Day of Toxic Construction & Demolition Waste Planned to be Burned in Westbrook
On Thursday, November 17, about a dozen people spoke out at a Public Hearing against plans for over a million pounds a day of toxic construction and demolition waste to be burned at the SAPPI mill in Westbrook.On Thursday, November 17, about a dozen people spoke out at a Public Hearing against plans for over a million pounds a day of toxic construction and demolition waste to be burned at the SAPPI mill in Westbrook. (Continued below_photo)
SAPPI also plans to build a massive construction and demolition waste processing facility to take in this waste, most of which would likely be shipped in from out of state.
The waste that would be burned in Westbrook, in Maine’s most populated region, only miles from Portland, would be allowed to include over 10,000 pounds a day each of plastics and asbestos, over 15,000 pounds a day of Arsenic treated wood, over 500 pounds a day of Lead, and unknown amounts of Mercury.
According to Department of Environmental Protection representatives speaking at the meeting, the highly toxic ash that results from incinerating this waste would be run through the SAPPI water treatment plant for disposal.
Maine is the only state in New England that has so-called “biomass boilers” incinerating this waste. It is illegal to landfill this waste in Massachusetts. In New Hampshire, where there is a moratorium on burning this waste, Governor Lynch stated, “The burning of construction and demolition debris poses serious risks to the health of our citizens and the health of the environment. …80% of the debris burned in Maine comes from out of state. We must not let New Hampshire become the new dumping ground for this material.”
The plans to incinerate this waste in Westbrook is only one of many plans for dumping and burning this waste in Maine. This practice has gained strength following state legislation passed at the last minute and without a needed Public Hearing this Spring that encourages the importating and burning of this waste in Maine.
There is also significant public funding for corporations incinerating this waste, thanks to Bush’s Energy Bill which provides ever growing amounts of taxpayer money for “renewable energy” sources. Thanks to waste industry lobbying pressure, incinerating toxic waste is considered to be an eligible form of “renewable energy”.
The town of Athens, Maine has a year-long moratorium that stops the incineration of this waste. This moratorium was passed with major public support. It allows the people to develop local ordinances that give the community the power to decide whether it wants to allow burning this waste in the town. Other communities can use this same process to protect themselves from the dangers of burning this waste.
There are better ways to deal with construction and demolition debris so it does not become dangerous waste. Burning these materials results in the creation of new and more concentrated poisons. Deconstruction of buildings and reuse of materials is standard practice throughout the world – why not in Maine?
The state DEP and legislature have said quite clearly that they consider incineration of this toxic waste to be safe. While it is important to send comments to the DEP, attend Public Hearings, and appeal their rulings in favor of this dangerous practice, local organizing will be necessary for folks to effectively protect the health of their families and communities from this threat.
The DEP is accepting written testimony on the Air Emissions application for this project through Tuesday, November 21, 2006. Comments can be sent to Randy.L.McMullin (at) maine.gov.
For more info on opposition to burning this waste in Westbrook, email westbrookforcleanair (at) yahoo.com .
For more information on the Athens moratorium and ordinance, email sterren (at) brandeis.edu.
UNEP describes itself as “The leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda, promotes the coherent implementation of the environmental dimension of sustainable development within the United Nations system, and serves as an authoritative advocate for the global environment.
The assessment integrates the climate and air pollution costs and benefits from methane mitigation.
“Cutting methane is the strongest lever we have to slow climate change over the next 25 years and complements necessary efforts to reduce carbon dioxide.” said Inger Andersen, Executive Director of UNEP. “The benefits to society, economies, and the environment are numerous and far outweigh the cost. We need international cooperation to urgently reduce methane emissions as much as possible this decade,”
As a shuttered waste processing plant in Hampden looks to reopen under new ownership later this year, the Orrington incinerator that’s been handling most of the Bangor area’s waste in the interim sees a chance for collaboration with the waste plant across the river rather than continued rivalry.
“I think two facilities can survive,” said Henry Lang, plant manager at Orrington’s Penobscot Energy Recovery Co., or PERC, which has generated electricity by burning trash since the 1980s. “If the two facilities work together, they actually come out ahead.”
PERC has struggled to stay profitable and find new sources of waste since more than 100 towns and cities stopped sending their household trash there in 2018 in favor of the Coastal Resources of Maine plant in Hampden that was supposed to open that year. The Orrington plant has since upgraded its equipment to reduce processing costs and incinerate a larger portion of the waste it takes in. But a few other ventures — including one to prepare Maine wood chips for export to Europe, and another to import shredded plastic waste from Northern Ireland — haven’t panned out.
full article CLICK HERE
FXCERPT FROM THE BDN STORY:
“The Pennsylvania-based company working to purchase a shuttered waste processing plant in Hampden specializes in mixing wastewater sludge with household trash, then burning the mixture to produce electricity.
“Delta Thermo Energy has tried out the technology in small-scale test projects in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, and the process is based on the company’s work at facilities in Germany, South Korea and elsewhere overseas.
“But if the company closes on the Hampden plant as intended next month, it would be its first time running a full-scale waste processing plant in the U.S. after a number of other attempts to build plants in the mid-Atlantic fell through.
“The Coastal Resources of Maine plant in Hampden has been closed since last May after it ran out of money to pay its bills and fund a series of performance upgrades. Delta Thermo was one of seven companies that expressed interest in taking over the shuttered operation, and it signed an agreement to negotiate its purchase of the plant late last year.
“Delta Thermo Energy CEO Rob Van Naarden expects the deal with the Coastal Resources of Maine plant’s bondholders to close by the end of March and the plant to restart four to six weeks after that.
“The company plans to run the plant with its existing technology to start, but the goal is to deploy Delta Thermo’s own technology there in the future, Van Naarden said in a meeting with the Municipal Review Committee on Jan. 19. The Municipal Review Committee represents the 115 towns and cities that send their waste to the Hampden plant. They’ve been sending it to the PERC incinerator in Orrington and the Crossroads Landfill in Norridgewock since the Hampden facility has been idled.
Full story at the link
Van Naarden was questioned by John Banks of the Penobscot Nation (1) whether the new operation they proposed, with no landfilling and no incineration would start out that way or was it a long term goal? The company rep said they would try their hardest .(2) What specific actions would you take to get to no incineration or landfilling? He didn’t explain but pointed to the company’s operations in Europe and Japan that it said neither incinerate nor landfill the municipal waste that enters them
A reporter for News Center TV asked the CEO about the fate of the former employees. Would they be hired back? The answer: only groundworkers, that do first stage processing. How many employees . Answer: around 30
Cary Donovan asked if tipping fees would differ for towns that used single sort waste vs those that recycle on the town end. Answer Would keep it as it was before. Dave asked Since the first goal is get it running is the state playing along? Answer Yes they can transfer existing permits. “Someone” asked for details of the special waste process the company uses. She said she understood it d to be be first stage is recycling extraction and the second stage is organics extraction Others raised questions but the company CEO remained very general about its plans.
“The Hampden waste facility that shut down last spring after just six months could soon reopen under the management of a Pennsylvania company that converts trash to electricity.
The company, Delta Thermo Energy, hopes to close the deal and reopen the Coastal Resources of Maine plant within the next four months, CEO Rob Van Naarden said Tuesday afternoon.”
“The Hampden plant, which converted household trash into a mix of fuels and other materials, closed last May after its owners ran out of money amid a number of construction and startup delays. That forced 115 Maine towns and cities to instead send their trash to landfills in Norridgewock and Old Town and to an Orrington plant that burns trash to generate electricity”. Full January 21, 2021 BDN article
Finally a buyer has been selected to restart and operate the Fiberight waste recycling facility in Hampden Maine The identity of the new buyer will be announced on January 19th Watch and listen to the presentation Jan 19th at this zoom link : https://zoom.us/j/94724611326
The Municipal Review committee is a group of 115 municipalities organized originally to collectively negotiate agreements with the PERC waste-to-energy facility in Orrington, Maine to burn their Municipal Solid Waste.
Then in 2018 the new Fiberight plant, AKA Coastal Resources of Maine, a competing trash recycling / waste to energy facility in Hampden, started up. But then it had to shut down in May of 2020, as they were never able to fully operate as promised, and ran out of money. Since then the solid waste of the MRC towns and cities has been sent to Juniper Ridge Landfill in Old Town and the PERC trash to energy incinerator in Orrington This should end once the Fiberight plant restarts. Time will tell…
On January 7, 2021, Maine Board of Environmental Protection held a zoom meeting that included waste rule changes brought forward by citizens group Don’t Waste ME, Penobscot Nation, and others. Listen to participants below. Fact Sheet (PDF) :: Draft Rule Chapter (PDF) :: Citizen Petition :: Adoption Packet The BEP declined to adopt nearly all the requested rule changes See Maine Public Radio News story
The changes would’ve (1)defined waste as “Maine Waste” only if it originated in Maine. This to end a recycling loophole that lets thousands of truckloads of waste to be brought to Maine every year from other states and landfilled as “Maine waste”. (2) they would have instituted Environmental Justice as a regulatory criterion for state siting or expansion of landfills or their discharging waste.
PART 1 INTRODUCTION; AGENCY ON THE PETITION
PART 2 PUBLIC SPEAKERS
Bill Lippincott 4min 14sec (see 14)
PART 3 BEP deliberates on DWM’s rulemaking petition Full 30 minute audio