The Landfill Bill (S328) was removed from the Senate Calendar on Monday and moved to Senate Finance. The Senate Finance Committee will take up the bill next week, and from there it could go to the Senate for a vote.
Excellent Analysis of S328, Solid Waste Management Act of 2013 (June 7, 2013)
Chart prepared by Grady McCallie of NC Conservation Network, and Chandra Taylor of Southern Environmental Law Center of NC.
Below are more specifics about the bill:
· raising landfill height restrictions and reducing protective buffers
· expands the length of permits to 30 years, so even as standards change or improve, the entire landfill stays grandfathered under old, inadequate standards
· allowing groundwater contamination to stay in place until it actually contaminants the neighbor’s property;
· eliminating the requirement for regular inspections of leachate collection lines, which prevent toxic liquid sludge from spreading away from a landfill. This would mean a landfill operator would wait until a leaking line is found and THEN fix it, rather than prevent a leak from occurring
· prohibiting revisions to state groundwater standards more frequently than once every five years - this is weakened from the current 3 year review, and affects the whole groundwater program
· allowing construction of a landfill in wetlands that fall outside federal Clean Water Act jurisdiction.
· allowing for landfills that are 300 feet high – 90 feet taller that the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse.
· limits the landfill operator’s responsibility to assess a release of polluted water generated by the landfill.
Here’s a link to a blog post about this issue: http://www.smithenvironment.com/weakening-environmental-standards-for-landfills/
No matter the timing of the bill, the best thing to do is to contact your representatives, and others for whom you think this information is valuable, as soon as possible. Again, the NC Conservation Network petition is here: https://secure3.convio.net/nccn/site/Advocacy?cmd=display&page=UserAction&id=851
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