Consider regional impact
Published 6:31 pm Wednesday, December 5, 2018
During the “Enough is Enough” conference Nov. 27, which included a gathering of people and grassroots organizations concerned about large-scale projects in Virginia with potential environmental impacts, District Two Supervisor with the Powhatan County Board of Supervisors, Larry Nordvig, is looking into the potential for a legislation that would define when an issue is significant enough to have a regional impact, and what the responsibilities of local governments should be in those situations.
“This is not just a Cumberland County issue,” Nordvig said during the meeting about the Green Ridge landfill, one of the projects discussed. “This is a regional issue. A Virginia issue.”
The total acreage that the landfill would encompass is 1,143.872 acres, with officials estimating that approximately 500-600 of those acres would be use for disposal sites.
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The landfill, according to representatives of County Waste of Virginia, which owns Green Ridge, could potentially contain all of the trash County Waste has for Virginia sites, estimated to be approximately 3,500 tons per day.
The landfill could also accept trash from other companies that are based in Virginia and adjoining states.
To collect up to 5,000 tons per day of trash, County Waste officials said there is the potential to accept trash from other states reaching a 500-air-mile radius, a rather far distance.
Between 3,500-5,000 tons of trash would have to be carried by trucks that would travel on Route 60. Before reaching Route 60, they would have to drive through interstates and state routes.
Increased traffic on roads coming through neighboring counties, including Powhatan, runs the risk of increased vehicle accidents, increased need for first responders and increased costs associated with road repairs when necessary.
There’s also the consideration of the landfill site’s proximity to the James River. The Cobbs Creek Reservoir came from an agreement between Cumberland and Henrico to provide a water supply. The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is currently evaluating the permit for the Green Ridge landfill. Any potential for leakage or risk of contamination should be carefully evaluated by County Waste of Virginia and the DEQ.
Similar to the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, which would run through Buckingham, Cumberland and Prince Edward counties, this project does not solely affect one county. It has the potential to affect counties surrounding it. Every individual who may be affected by large-scale projects of this nature has the right to be fully informed of the benefits and risks, and each individual, whether a resident of government official, should have a say if the project is determined to have a regional or multi-county impact.
EMILY HOLLINGSWORTH is a staff reporter for The Farmville Herald and Farmville Newsmedia, LLC. Her email address is Emily.Hollingsworth@FarmvilleHerald.com.