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Explaining The Central Landfill: Why it Matters
by Taylor Hay

Central Landfill has been allowed to pollute our local air for so long that it’s simply become the norm for too many of the people living in its shadow. The gases the landfill emits are not only bad for the physical health of its immediate neighbors, however. On a broad scale, fugitive emissions like the kind generated by the landfill contribute to global warming, which means they have real and lasting effects for people everywhere.

Blog
Portland Places Fee on Plastic/Paper Bags and Bans Polystyrene Foam
by Ben Tettlebaum

San Francisco beat Portland, Maine, to the punch. So did China, Delhi, India, and at least 120 municipalities and counties around the United States. But after a lengthy two years of democracy at work, a four-hour meeting on June 16 led to the Portland City Council voting 6-3 to approve a fee on plastic and…

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Help CLF clear the air at Rhode Island’s Central Landfill
by Max Greene

Two weeks ago, we took the first step toward filing suit against the companies that are supposed to be – but aren’t – collecting harmful landfill gas from the Central Landfill in Johnston, Rhode Island. Because these companies are not collecting this gas, the Landfill is releasing pollutants into Rhode Island’s air.  I’ll write more…

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As Plain as the Nose on Your Face: Major Clean Air Act Violations at Rhode Island’s Central Landfill
by Max Greene

For miles around Rhode Island’s Central Landfill, the air often smells like rotten eggs.  In the Landfill, garbage degrades and gives off a gas that is part hydrogen sulfide (which produces the rotten-egg smell), part volatile organic compounds (which can cause cancer), and part methane (a potent greenhouse gas).  At well-run landfills, collection systems capture…

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Maine DEP Cuts the Juniper Ridge Landfill Expansion Down to Size
by Greg Cunningham

Earlier this week the Maine Department of Environmental Protection made a formal determination that Maine would benefit from an expansion of the state-owned Juniper Ridge Landfill located in Old Town. In doing so, it cut in half what the State and Juniper’s private manager Casella Waste Systems Inc.’s subsidiary NEWSME had asked for, authorizing an expansion that would increase capacity of the landfill by up to 9.35 million cubic yards, thereby adding ten-plus years of capacity. By cutting the proposal down to size, the DEP sent the clear message that it doesn’t want Maine to continue to be the dumping ground for New England’s waste. That relatively conservative approach is a good start but more work needs to be done to define the role of Juniper and other landfills and to fully address other flaws in Maine’s waste management system.