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Landfill regulations, the tougher the better

January 9, 2011
Morning Journal News

An Associated Press story last week reported that the proposed strengthening of Ohio environmental restrictions regarding dumps that accept construction and demolition waste has some landfill operators running scared.

Many landfill owners say the tighter restrictions could run them out of business. Well, if rules designed to better protect the lives and property of landfill neighbors are too difficult to obey, perhaps these people shouldn't be in the landfill business.

After all of the problems experienced by neighbors of the former A&L Salvage Landfill, which formerly operated just outside of Lisbon, and the years it took to get it closed despite numerous violations and horrible, noxious odors, pleas that any landfill regulations are too strict will get no sympathy here.

The new draft rules introduced by the Ohio EPA last week will, for the first time, require synthetic liners at new or expanded landfills handling demolition waste. They also would require improved monitoring of groundwater at dumps that handle castoff lumber, masonry and drywall. Landfills will also be have to do more monitoring for potential odors and fires.

Had these proposed rules been in place before A&L Landfill was constructed, perhaps many of the problems in that area could have been avoided. That is, provided A&L had followed the rules.

Although that landfill is closed and capped now, many loose ends remain before the entire fiasco is over. Columbiana County Commissioners just last week filed a lawsuit in another attempt to recoup $225,000 owed by A&L Salvage for its share in the cost of a waterline extension project.

We say hurrah for stronger regulation of these types of landfills, and hope they will be enacted soon.

Perhaps the new rules will also aid Negley residents in their battle against the Total Waste Logistics landfill there.



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