Environmental news briefs

Last modified: Wednesday, September 09, 2015


Watershed Council targets trash tires

The Connecticut River Watershed Council’s 19th annual Source to Sea Cleanup on Sept. 25 and 26 will focus on cleaning up trash tires along rivers. The event occurs in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont and Connecticut, all in the 410-plus-mile Connecticut River basin.

Each fall, thousands of volunteers head out to clean the Connecticut River and its tributaries on foot or by boat. Volunteers remove trash along rivers, streams, parks, boat launches and trails. For more information or to register for the event, visit www.ctriver.org/cleanup.

“A massive tire dump along the Deerfield River in Greenfield ... is just one example of how tires are a major problem for the health and cleanliness of our rivers,” Alicea Charamut, watershed council river steward and cleanup organizer said in a statement. “Unfortunately, tire dumps like this one are not unusual. And individual tires discarded in rivers and streams throughout the watershed of the four river states are just as much of an issue.”

Last year, Source to Sea Cleanup volunteers reported collecting at least 745 tires.

The council began obtaining permits to clean up the Greenfield tire dump in 2014 and is continuing efforts this year.

“Our goal is to keep trash and tires from getting in our rivers in the first place and to eventually put ourselves out of the business of cleaning up our rivers” Charamut said. “In addition to coordinating volunteers to clean up trash, CRWC also collects data from cleanup groups about the amount and types of trash they find. This data supports year-round advocacy efforts and informs policies and legislation that will keep waste out of our rivers.”

The council is working with river states on establishing extended producer responsibility systems that hold producers responsible for free and easy disposal by consumers of items like tires, paint cans and appliances. In Vermont, the council helped create and pass legislation forming the Scrap Tire Management Stakeholder Group, tasked with addressing “legacy” scrap-tire piles and reducing improper scrap-tire disposal.

“We all have a responsibility to solve this problem—individuals, manufacturers, businesses, and government,” Andrew Fisk, executive director of the council said in a statement. “By working together, we can make a real difference for our rivers.”

People are asked to report tire dumps or other trash sites on the Source to Sea Cleanup website or by contacting Charamut at cleanup@ctriver.org or 860-704-0057.

Environmental groups 
form coalition on energy

BOSTON — Dozens of environmental organizations along with community and religious groups are teaming up to lobby for energy legislation on Beacon Hill.

The groups have scheduled news conferences for Wednesday in Boston, Weymouth, Fall River, Holyoke and Pittsfield to announce the launch of Mass Power Forward.

The new coalition says it will offer a united front against what it calls the “polluting infrastructure,” and lobby for bills that would transition the state to greater reliance on clean energy technology.

Environmental groups involved in the effort include the Sierra Club, Toxics Action Center, the Environmental League of Massachusetts and Massachusetts Climate Action Network.

The coalition says it plan to take part in a legislative hearing on energy later this month.

— Associated Press


The following are recent state Department of Environmental Protection consent orders and penalty assessments in western Massachusetts.

∎ ASBESTOS AND SOLID WASTE VIOLATIONS CONSENT ORDER, July 22, GRANBY: Entered into a consent order with Palladium Holdings LLC for asbestos and solid waste violations at 76 Morgan St. in Granby. MassDEP found several piles of C&D waste at the site which subsequent testing revealed to contain asbestos. The landowner captured pictures of additional dumping taking place which identified Eric Taub of Palladium Holdings LLC as the person dumping the material at the location. Palladium Holdings was ordered to hire a contractor and clean up the property, including the proper removal, handling and disposal of the material containing asbestos. Palladium Holdings LLC has been determined to be financially unable to pay a penalty, but is required to implement best-management practices for all future asbestos abatement activities.


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