A recent a letter in the Gazette from an Ohio citizen, rightfully pointed out the effects of living with a nearly unregulated solid waste site. Ohio residents have a real problem: Ohio laws that govern waste are among the weakest in the nation. And Ohio has 71 waste landfills.
Ohio has no state requirement for environmental review or site plan analysis of locations proposed for disposal or transfer of municipal solid waster or construction and demolition debris waste.
Nor does Ohio’s state legislature appear eager to enact tougher regulation of what has become a profitable state-wide industry. The only review of waste sites in Ohio is left to under-funded local health departments, requiring landfills to avoid contact with drinking water aquifers.
Ohio Democrats have introduced bills to provide oversight for the location and processing of waste for years. The Republican majority in the Ohio legislature have repeatedly rejected the adoption of an environmental review process.
Waste industry magazines cite Ohio as being among the most desirable states to which to ship waste, due to the ease with which new landfills can be licensed for operation in Ohio and to the state’s proximity to the crowded Northeast, a net exporter of waste.
Ohio provides us a poignant example of why strict environmental oversight standards for all waste operations are critical and why the regulation of such land uses must be upheld at all levels of government. In short, Ohio has far less stringent controls in place than in New York.
In Croton, we are faced with the real possibility of an unregulated waste transfer station where waste is shipped by rail—not a landfill. Nevertheless, the Ohio experience points to why we must protect Croton from any kind of waste operation over which there is no local, county and state oversight.
— Ann Gallelli, Charlie Kane, Leo Wiegman, Trustees, Village of Croton-on-Hudson