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MARIN COUNTY'S NEWS MONTHLY - FREE PRESS
(415)868-1600 - (415)868-0502(fax) - P.O. Box 31, Bolinas, CA, 94924

September, 2005

 

Marin Dump Expansion Environmental Disaster
By Bruce Baum

I am writing to raise the alarm on something that I'm sure you care about as much as I do. And to ask for your help.
Marin faces a serious, urgent threat to our environment-major expansion of the Novato dump. Waste Management, Inc. (WMI), the giant national corporation which operates the "Redwood Sanitary Landfill"-DUMP in Novato, has immediate plans which threaten catastrophe in the Petaluma River marsh.
WMI proposes a 75% expansion by building to much greater heights and at much steeper slopes. Beyond the literally unimaginable visual impact of a 16 story mountain of garbage there are huge environmental risks. From seismic collapse, to "once-a-century" storms-we've had two in the last 20 years-think global warming. During big rains WMI empties the flooding leachate ponds into San Antonio Creek, dumping the toxic runoff into the pristine and irreplaceable Petaluma marsh-and running into the bay.
And the offsetting benefits? There are no benefits to the citizens of Marin.
We're down to the comment period of the final Environmental Impact Report (EIR) on this horrendous plan. A group of concerned citizens have been working for four years to stop this plan. We oppose the expansion. We are taking a two pronged approach and here is where you come in:
1. We have hired experts, engineers and scientists, to comment on the Environmental Impact Report, which we believe is grossly incomplete and skewed in favor of Waste Management.
2. We are requesting that the Marin Board of Supervisors re-write the 1958 Land Use Permit enabling the dump to operate. I don't want to bore you with the details - they're on our site www.noexpansion.org Here's what I'm asking:
We need your financial support to pay for the experts. Any amount will help. Your donation will help pay for the geotechnical consultant, water chemist, hydrologist and a California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) attorney.
$100 pays for 1 hour of the geotech's or water chemist's time, or 1/2 hour of the hydrologist or attorney's time. We need about $25,000 immediately. Please write a check today to NWLE (No Wetlands Landfill Expansion) mail to c/o Baum, 1165 Butterfield Rd, San Anselmo, CA 94960
We need you to contact your Marin County Supervisor to ask the Board to reopen the 1958 Land Use Permit (LUP). In merely one and one-half pages that document authorized nearly unlimited abuse of our precious land and water. In contrast, Alameda's 1999 LUP with Waste Management is 40 pages of strongly enforceable conditions.
Under the current Land Use Permit, Waste Management will continue to be allowed to police themselves without effective oversight.
We have taken three of the five supervisors on boat tours the Petaluma River to see the dump from a more "personal" perspective. They are willing to rewrite the Land Use Permit with sufficient citizens' support. Their web site for e-mail is http://www.co.marin.ca.us/depts/BS/main/index.cfm . Please write them or call now!
See for yourself on TV next week; Monday August 29th, at 7:30 and 10 P.M., and Tuesday through Friday at 10 P.M. the Marin Report on Comcast channel 26 will broadcast an 8 minute segment on the landfill from our boat tour, and an interview with Redwood's operators.
Thank you in advance for your contribution and your support.
Bruce Baum
San Anselmo
PS: Please pass this on to your friends... and, thanks again.

Hi All Folks in Marin that know me. This is very important stuff. You all know I have lived in Marin my whole life, and you all know what an avid outdoorsman I am. One of my true love is fishing and diving. I would like to see support for less expansion of wetlands use as dumping grounds for 3-7 plastics and other counties garbage. Join the cause and protect our unique Marin County wetlands ecosystem.
Here's to a healthy bay tidal zone environment.
Pat Guasco




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