A bill to study the amount of out-of-state waste entering the Granite State will now head to Gov. Chris Sununu’s desk after passing both the House and Senate by a voice vote. The House passed Senate Bill 159, which will establish a committee to investigate the relationship between out-of-state solid waste and unlimited service area permits for landfills. An unlimited service area landfill is permitted to accept waste from any source, including those out of state. A limited service area landfill can accept trash only from certain geographical areas, such as counties or municipalities.
According to Sen. Donovan Fenton, the Keene Democrat who introduced the bill, “[its] purpose is to prohibit the Department of Environmental Services from issuing any future unlimited service area landfill permits.” New Hampshire has three municipal solid waste landfills with unlimited service areas: North Country Environmental Services (NCES) in Bethlehem, the Mount Carberry Secure Landfill in Success, and the Turnkey Landfill in Rochester.
Waste Management operates the Turnkey Landfill. During the Northeast Resource Recovery Association’s annual conference, Director of Disposal Operations Steve Poggi said because of diminished waste capacity in Connecticut and Massachusetts, “there’s a lot of material that’s getting on trains to New York, Ohio, Alabama, Indiana. We’re getting requests to take more out-of-state waste. There’s a need south of the border.”