Letter: Correcting Casella “Facts” about the Coventry Landfill by DUMP

in Letter to the Editor/Newport

DUMP LLC is a group of local residents who have been researching volumes of documents relating to the Coventry Landfill expansion for over a year now. We currently are appealing the permit that Casella received for this expansion. John Casella wrote a letter to all the local papers with a bunch of “facts” to support his company. Although much of what he wrote is technically correct, it is what he didn’t include in his facts that is disturbing. This letter is also fact-based to explain to readers what Casella failed to tell us.

1. He states that his company just ‘finished” the process to expand the landfill. What he didn’t tell you is that this permit is being appealed. He also didn’t tell you that they still need to acquire a Pre-discharge permit to treat the 11 million gallons of PFAS laden leachate that they collect at the bottom of this dump. It is NOT finished.

2. He praises his company for being the only solution and a necessity because the consumer uses so much. He even says that we can pretend landfills should not exist and we are just emotional. What he fails to tell you is that many other countries are moving to greener waste to energy plants that do not landfill the garbage. Landfills are old technology and not the best way to dispose of what consumers throw away.

3. Casella says that Vermonters need to do more to reduce waste by recycling and repurposing. Although we agree with that – what he doesn’t tell you is that his company is permitted to take 600,000 tons of waste per year and 30% of that comes from out of State and contains primarily asbestos, contaminated soil, construction debris, coal ash and sludge. If Vermonters reduced their waste by 50% or about 225,000 tons, Casella would simply get more of the really bad stuff listed above to fill the gap. Coventry would still get 600,000 tons a year. Just more of it would be the asbestos, contaminated soil, construction debris, coal ash and sludge from out of State. That is an even worse situation for our area. And Casella profits would increase because they charge more for out of state refuse.

4. Casella states that “landfills do not manufacture PFAS”. That is true. What he doesn’t tell you is that they do consolidate it in one area to the tune of 11 million gallons of landfill leachate which reports show contain the highest concentration of PFAS. Then they send it to Wastewater Plants throughout the state to go untreated into our rivers and lakes. And Casella states “the State of Vt has studied volumes of data to determine the safety of Wastewater Plants throughout Vermont”, Casella fails to tell you that the ANR has determined that “Wastewater treatment facilities do NOT effectively treat PFAS”. Furthermore, Mr. Casella does not tell you that the District 7 ACT 250 board ruled not to allow leachate to be treated in Newport WWTF or the Memphremagog Watershed because it has not been proven safe.

5. Casella goes on to blame our Canadian neighbors and our group DUMP LLC for being the real risk to the lake. Fact: our waters flow north. Canadians are not polluting Lake Memphremagog. That statement is absolutely ridiculous. We are the ones committed to protecting the area from not only water pollution but also polluting the air we breathe (which Casella failed to address). We have no profit to gain but we have future generations to protect. We are doing our part. We do agree with Mr. Casella that you all need to educate yourselves. Read our ACT 250 filing on our website. www.nolakedump.com It also has the documents to support our opposition.

Anyone can give you their opinion as Mr. Casella did. He is not entitled to his own facts.

Water is Life and Air is precious.

Sincerely,

DUMP LLC (Don’t Undermine Memphremagog’s Purity)
PO Box 1402 – Newport, VT 05855

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