The Frederick County Commissioners, so bent on constructing an incinerator for the countys trash, have put the construction bids on hold. On Saturday, March 28, the Catoctin group cosponsored a terrific Waste Not Expo, aimed at zero waste. The exposition was held at Frederick High School in Frederick, MD. Over 300 people came to learn how communities across the country are increasing recycling, and choosing alternatives to landfills and incinerators. From 9:30 A.M. until 2:00 P.M., there were speakers, booths, kids activities, and music.
The group held this event because Frederick County was considering building an incinerator to burn the county’s trash. Such an incinerator would have been detrimental to the county fiscally, costing $527 million, and environmentally, discouraging county residents from recycling, and polluting the air with toxins. Fly ash is emitted by incinerators; it should be captured and treated as toxic waste, not mixed with less toxic ash to dilute it.
The Frederick County Commissioners had asked Carroll County to “buy into” building the incinerator, and had pushed forward despite fairly strong opposition to the incinerator. Hearings were held on the proposed incinerator on February 17 and February 19. The hearings concerned two proposed incinerator sites: one, an Alcoa industrial site, and the other, near the Monocacy Battlefield. But, for now, the location of the proposed incinerator just might be moot. The Expo and other efforts to educate the public about incinerators paid off; thanks to all the activists who worked on this issue.
Waste is a growing issue in our region. The permit for a waste incinerator in Baltimore was not renewed, and it has been operating, spewing waste without a permit, for a year. The Maryland Department of the Environment is suing. The Dickerson incinerator in Montgomery County should never have been constructed. It is lowering recycling rates and has maintenance issues. An incinerator is a 50-year commitment and goes in the wrong direction for achieving proper waste disposal, curtailing global warming emissions, and creating “green jobs” to help our economy.
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