by Diana Wright
On March 28, Albany and Saratoga Counties unveiled plans for a jointly funded aerobic digester facility in Menands. It has bi-partisan support in the Albany County Legislature and will save each county $1 million annually. It will shut down 4 incinerators at the current facility, which spew out toxic chemicals into the air, and will instead create green energy which could potentially power, in part, the Sheridan Hollow facility. (see article in the Saratogian at: http://www.saratogian.com/general-news/20180328/saratoga-albany-counties-join-forces-on-45m-waste-to-energy-plant)
The state of the art facility, which could cost as much as $45 million to build, will primarily take in sewage sludge, but will also be designed to use food waste from area institutions such as the Albany County nursing Home, Jail hospitals and schools.
PAUSE is in support of this project and needs the help of area environmentalists, planners and recyclers to put pressure on the City of Albany to look at collaborating with the County and the region to solve it’s solid waste problem. The City landfill is expected to reach capacity in 2-3 years. At which point the Mayor plans to build a $30 million transfer station to ship our trash across the state and even across state lines to someone else’s “back yard”. Basically kicking the can down the road until those landfills close as well. While at the same time creating carbon pollution from the diesel trucks transporting our waste hundreds of miles away.
Solid waste is a global problem. Albany is currently taking in solid waste from many other communities, expediting the looming closure of the Rapp Road facility by years. The Mayor and DGS have implemented new recycling bins for the single stream recycling center on South Pearl, for which they are to be commended. However, much more is needed to reduce our waste stream. A subcommittee of PAUSE is meeting to come up with a strategy to convince the Mayor to collaborate with Albany County to utilize the new Anerobic digester facility to reduce our waste and present a plan that is sustainable, environmentally and economically beneficial to the city and the Capital Region. Please contact Diana Wright if you are interested in sharing your time and ideas to this project. firstname.lastname@example.org 518-465-9748.
Published in April/May 2018 Newsletter
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