OLD TOWN — Members of the Penobscot Nation and environmental conservation group Don’t Waste Maine teamed up Thursday morning to speak out against what they say is out-of-state toxic waste going into the Juniper Ridge Landfill.
None of the claims can be verified, but according to the Vice President of Casella Waste Systems, the company which owns Juniper Ridge Landfill said none of these claims are true.
“This facility and others like it exist to protect public health and safety and environmental health and safety. In fact, I would believe that as part of any Earth Day celebration you would want to recognize the fact that this infrastructure exists,” said Joe Fusco of Casella Waste Systems.
Ed Spencer of Don’t Waste Maine said, “outfits like Casella hauling trash all over New England and beyond that’s got to become a thing of the past.”
He said toxic waste and mills have infuriated the Penobscot Nation people for years.
Native American Nolan Altvater said, “Juniper Ridge Landfill is just another recent form of the state not respecting sovereignty.”
Spencer said Casella Waste Systems does not care and they have been dumping large amounts of toxic wastes at the Juniper Ridge Landfill for a long time.
“Like we don’t know what’s in these truckloads, we know generally they call it construction debris or demolition debris,” Spencer said.
Don’t Waste Maine and some Penobscot Nation people are trying to push legislation in Maine that would prevent any out-of-state waste from being dumped in Maine landfills. They said the bills have been in the works but nothing is official. Legislators have been taking their time in doing anything to stop waste in landfills.
The bills would help stop any toxins coming into the state and potentially dumping them into the landfills.