The Alliance For A Clean Environment
Printable Version

Pottstown Airport Safety
and Waste Management’s New Permit

for a 50 foot vertical expansion of the 73 acre
Eastern Expansion

  • DEP should not even be considering this permit.
  • DEP originally sent this permit back to Waste Management in December because of a law, which states that an airport runway must be 10,000 feet from a landfill.
  • The Eastern Expansion, which the Pottstown Landfill now wants to make 50 feet higher, is only about 4,000 from the runway of the Pottstown Airport.
  • It has been declared unsafe by law to have an airport runway less than 10,000 feet from a landfill. Yet DEP has made a deal for Waste Management to use a grandfather loophole to reconsider a permit for vertical expansion which DEP has already rejected because it is unsafe.
  • WHY consider a permit to allow 73 landfill acres, which are only about 4,000 feet from the Pottstown Airport runway, to become even 50 feet higher. This will not inevitably and unquestionably be far less safe.
  • Using a grandfather loophole is irresponsible. This is an unnecessary threat to public safety, which must not be permitted. To allow an even higher landfill (50 feet is higher than most houses), at such an unsafe distance from the Pottstown Airport, will unquestionably further jeopardize public safety.

Federal Aviation Agency (FAA) Pottstown Landfill – Pottstown Airport

The FAA condemned 4 previous Pottstown Landfill expansions because of the facility’s proximity to Pottstown’s Municipal Airport.

  • 1994 – FAA found the Eastern Expansion of the Pottstown Landfill INCOMPATIBLE with the nearby Pottstown Airport.
  • The Eastern Expansion is what Waste Management is asking to make 50 feet higher.
  • If the FAA found the Eastern Expansion incompatible initially, it is even less compatible 50 feet higher. Obviously, the taller the structure near an airport, the greater the risks.
  • The FAA does not approve of landfills near airports because of possible bird-airplane encounters.
  • The manager of programming and planning for FAA’s Airports Division said “Landfills tend to attract large number of scavenging birds and impact the safety of the airport. The seagull is the main bird, but there are others.”
  • He also said there have been reports of “bird strikes” at the Pottstown Airport.
  • Most of the “bird strikes” happened at night so the pilots could not see what type of bird was struck.
  • The Airport Facility Directory warns pilots of large numbers of birds near the Pottstown airport.
  • Small planes are slower and fly closer to the runway which makes them more susceptible to bird collisions.
  • While the FAA does not have regulatory powers over the landfill, their findings have liability implications. “If there is an accident there caused by birds, we are on record as being opposed. If someone sues, they would sue whoever issued the permit.”

DEP ignored each of FOUR FAA requests for DEP to deny all FOUR Pottstown Landfill expansions. FAA recommendations were made because the landfill is a significant threat to public safety.

  • Waste Management must be made to stop dumping on us, destroying our air, water, and soil, making us sick. We can not afford to step aside by while the Pottstown Landfill destroys our children’s future. The waste stream is growing ever more hazardous, regardless of the name of the wastes (industrial, residual, or municipal).
  • There is 12 years of waste capacity for dumping in PA at the current over inflated PA rate of dumping. Pottstown Landfill expansion is not necessary.
  • It is time for Waste Management to shut down the Pottstown Landfill and take our waste to one of the already permitted locations in PA.

Pottstown Landfill HARMS clearly outweigh benefits by LARGE MARGINS!

Pottstown Landfill expansion is about corporate profit at the expense of our families, friends, and neighbors. The Pottstown Landfill must be shut down now.

The landfill is already too big, it produces too much hazardous gas, our air is too polluted, and people are too sick.
Increases in many environmentally linked illnesses have been verified by the majority of physicians from the medical staffs of two area hospitals. These physicians also expressed their concern.

There is NO JUSTIFICATION for increasing the obvious risks to tens of thousands of area residents from Pottstown Landfill expansion. No more word games! We can not afford to play the safe level game, when the polluters do their own testing, monitoring, and reporting. The honor system has not worked in this community. No more double talk and broken promises!

Harm to area residents from the Pottstown Landfill gases and leachate, both physically and financially, can not be denied. While the hidden costs of Pottstown Landfill pollution are enormous, they can not even be fully evaluated.

Hazardous substances documented to be a threat from Pottstown Landfill gases and leachate cause many of the kinds of elevated environmentally linked illnesses we are seeing in this community, including the documented kinds of severely elevated cancers. The harmful health effects of these substances are documented by EPA, NIOSH, and ATSDR. Synergistic and cumulative effects are unknown of even those substances. Many hazards in the gas have never even been tested for their toxicity to human health.

We must unite now as a community and do what ever it takes to STOP THIS THREAT AND AGGRESSION AGAINST OUR QUALITY OF LIFE AND OUR HEALTH. The waste stream into the Pottstown Landfill is going to get even worse since restrictions on radiation and other dangerous chemicals are being relaxed even further. Our governor, our state representatives and our state senator have NOT been willing to STOP us from getting dumped on. They continue to use excuses not to take the steps necessary to stop their friends, the waste industry from destroying our future with this dangerous waste. Local officials have sold out our health and quality of life for money. It is up to us!

P.O. Box 3063
Stowe, PA 19464

disclaimer  |  privacy policy  |  home  |  back to top  |  feedback  |
|  donate online  |  contents  |  contact us  |  join  |  contact web master  |