S.5862 (Maziarz) A.248-B (DelMonte)



S.5862 (Maziarz) A.248-B (DelMonte)


Hazardous Waste Landfill Restrictions



The Business Council strongly opposes this legislation which is designed to preclude expansion of the state's only permitted commercial hazardous waste landfill in Model City, Niagara County, by prohibiting issuance of new RCRA permits to any facility that has even the potential to discharge persistent chemicals into the Great Lakes system.

This legislation represents bad public policy for several reasons:

  • Under New York State law, hazardous wastes must be treated before land disposal, and hazardous waste landfills are subject to stringent design and operation standards, including requirements for the detection, capture and treatment of any discharges. These requirements make disposal in a permitted hazardous waste landfill an environmentally safe waste management option. It makes no sense to prohibit their siting in the entire Great Lakes basin based on such a limited potential for a release.

  • This onerous legislation will add to the cost of industrial operations and remedial activities in New York State by eliminating the option of in-state disposal capacity for wastes and residuals requiring land disposal. In effect, this legislation could add to the costs of brownfield and superfund cleanups in New York. The legislature should not be erecting barriers to environmentally safe, cost-effective in-state waste management options.

  • Under the logic of this legislation, the legislature should be proposing to prohibit new and renewed discharge permits for virtually all municipal wastewater treatment systems in the Great Lakes basin as well, because virtually all public wastewater treatment systems also pose the potential for discharge of bio-accumulative chemicals from household, industrial and non-point sources. Obviously, legislators would recognize that as an illogical and impractical response to requirements of the Great Lakes Initiative. New York has implemented stringent new limits on bio-accumulative discharges in the Great Lakes basin and, as mentioned above, has strict requirements in place regarding the treatment and management of hazardous wastes. This legislation simply contributes absolutely nothing to meeting our toxic release reduction goals.

  • While New York is a net “importer” of hazardous wastes, businesses and municipalities in New York State still remain dependent on out of state disposal capacity for both hazardous and municipal solid wastes. In fact, New York is a significant exporter of solid wastes – sending about 7 million tons of garbage to out of state disposal facilities each year. Legislation like this that would eliminate in-state capacity will adversely impact New York by helping renew calls on the national level for restrictions on interstate shipments of wastes. New York would face significant capacity shortfalls, and increased costs, if other states were able to erect barriers or punitive fees on interstate waste shipments.

For these reasons, The Business Council opposes enactment of S.5862/A.248-B.