CLF appealing Turnkey landfill expansion – News – fosters.com

KeepHealthCare.ORG – CLF appealing Turnkey landfill expansion – News – fosters.com


Kyle Stucker @KyleRStucker

ROCHESTER — The nonprofit Conservation Law Foundation will continue its fight against the recently approved expansion of Waste Management’s Turnkey Landfill in Gonic.

The CLF filed an appeal Wednesday to challenge New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services’ approval of the 58.6-acre expansion. NHDES approved the permit last month, stating that Waste Management operates the roughly 1,200-acre Turnkey in a manner protective of human health and the environment.

“We need to reduce our waste instead of looking for more places to bury it,” said Tom Irwin, the vice president and director of CLF New Hampshire. “It’s time for the state to stop undermining waste reduction efforts by expanding landfills and instead focus on zero waste strategies that treat waste as a resource.”

If the appeal is unsuccessful, the expansion will extend Turnkey’s operations from 2024 to at least 2034, during which Waste Management officials have said the facility will accept approximately 14 million tons of refuse. Since the landfill opened roughly 30 years ago, more than 21 million tons of refuse has been buried on the Rochester Neck Road site.

The state’s approval is contingent on the fact that Waste Management must assist at least 15 New Hampshire solid waste generators each year with establishing or improving programs that assist the state in carrying out its solid waste management plan.

Part of that management plan is designed to prevent the creation of new landfills because they are “the least preferred method of solid waste management,” according to NHDES. As such, Waste Management’s new Turnkey permit requires the company to achieve at least a 30 percent waste diversion rate to more preferred disposal methods every year.

In addition to concerns about the continued use of landfills, the CLF and other opponents of Turnkey’s expansion have cited various environmental concerns throughout the state’s review of Waste Management’s 2,211-page expansion application.

Waste Management officials have insisted Turnkey’s systems are stricter than federal standards and “pretty well proven” capable of preventing harmful contaminants from affecting local residents and the ecosystem.

“NHDES concurs with the applicant’s assertion and has determined that granting the waiver request is unlikely to result in adverse effects to the environment or natural resources of the State, public health or to public safety if designed and operated as proposed,” NHDES wrote in its 31-page approval.

Source: http://www.fosters.com/news/20180711/clf-appealing-turnkey-landfill-expansion

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