Friday, August 06, 2010

BP & Waste Mgmt - Two evils unite

Despite the fact that citizens of Harrison County, Mississippi have been fuming over what the county estimates is 1,200 tons of oil-tainted byproduct dumped there.

The dumping of oiled sand, tarballs and the hazmat suits and gloves
worn by the cleanup crews are being buried in a landfill owned by Waste Management.

Waste Management says that all the oil waste that has been stored at the landfill is classified as "non-hazardous," after being tested by the EPA and the Mississippi Bureau of Environmental Quality. It adds that there is a liner underneath the landfill, and groundwater there is monitored.

Waste Management also operates landfills that have been receiving oil waste in Mobile County in Alabama and Jackson County in Florida.

But local officials in Harrison County aren't easily assured. They point out that 250 homes are within a half-mile of the landfill.

And a supervisors meeting Monday didn't go all that smoothly.

"That landfill is in Harrison County for our waste," Supervisor William Martin said. "That's why it was built there. And now to allow BP to put all this waste in it, it's wrong."

It didn't help that a BP representative at the meeting did not have the authority to commit to anything. The representative was sent home.

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