Controversy Looms Over Landfill Expansion
PAINTED POST, NY (WENY) -- Recently, New York State has given the green light for a local landfill expansion even though some community members are concerned that some waste headed to the landfill could be radioactive. We spoke to the General Manager of the landfill, Larry Schilling, to help ease some of the concerns.
Schilling says, "Landfills, first of all, are engineered to not allow contaminants to escape from the environment. We are a non hazardous waste landfill so, anything that is considered hazardous certainly will not come to this landfill and even further, this landfill doesn't take municipal solid waste. We only take construction and demolition material."
The landfill is expanding from 60 acres to 80 acres, but Schilling however says there is no need to worry. He and the state of New York teamed up to see how dangerous the Marcellus shale is.
"We, with the cooperation of the state, developed a program to investigate what this radioactive shale really meant. It turns out that it is slightly above background. We did however install radiation sensors to ensure that nothing will have radioactive activity than what is allowed," says Schilling.
Schilling also says, ""The facts are that the Marcellus shale is not very radioactive. The drill cuttings that we accept are from drilling a hole, they have nothing to do with fracking."
Schilling says for residents that live near a landfill area they should have their wells tested regularly and that his landfill also has its wells tested regularly too.