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The nation's landfill? (Letters).

As it stands right now, Ohio as a whole, has 17 years of sited landfill space available. While citizens and businesses continue to do a good job in recycling and finding new uses for what was once thought of as "throw-aways," our available landfill space faces an increased threat. That is out-of-state trash.

Right now, the average tipping fee at landfills in Ohio is just under $28 per ton. Compare that to states like Pennsylvania ($50.84 perton) and Virginia ($40.28 per ton) and simple economics dictates that Ohio may be a bargain for out-of-state dumpers.

Due to federal court rulings, Ohio has no right to refuse out-of-state trash. Al ready, 28 states export almost 2 million tons of trash annually to our state according to the Ohio E.P.A. New York City currently dumps its trash in Virginia. It has no landfill, and the state of New York has no plans to site a new landfill there. So if the mayor of New York City and its private haulers do some consumer shopping, it's obvious that Ohio will shine as a bargain. Right now, New York City's daily output of trash is equal to the daily waste output of the entire state of Ohio.

It's clear that such decisions by large cities or out-of-state waste producers would penalize Ohio consumers. Our governments would have to begin siting more new landfills much earlier than originally planned. Ohioans, who have done their job by recycling and thereby conserving landfill space and farm land, would have to pay more to find new' landfill space, while those out of state waste producers accelerate the demise of our current space.

In recent years legislation has been proposed that would give states more power over interstate waste. We continue to support these efforts, and urge Ohioans to write their Senators and Representatives in hopes they too will back such legislation.

Ohioans deserve the right to control their own destiny. They should not be held responsible for the short-sidedness and the lack of planning on the part of others.
Mike Long,
Solid Waste Authority of Central Ohio,
Grove City, Ohio
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Author:Long, Mike
Publication:Recycling Today
Date:Mar 1, 2003
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