BRENTWOOD, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — A battle over garbage is brewing on Long Island.
With landfills closing, much of Long Island’s garbage is trucked out of state.
An industrial lot in Brentwood could soon be its newest transfer station, where trash will be loaded onto rail cars and sent north and west, but on the streets surrounding the proposed site, residents aren’t having it.
“We are no longer going to be a dumping ground for Long Island,” said Maria Gonzalez Prescod, with Brentwood School District.
This is the community with some of Long Island’s highest COVID numbers, tragic MS-13 student murders, and a park shut down after illegal dumping.
Residents like Anna Fernandez say they’ve been dumped on enough.
“The facility is going to open at 6 a.m., closing at 8 p.m. six days a week with 28 trucks coming in an hour, 32 on peak hours,” she said. “Can you just imagine the impact in this area here?”
They’re asking the Department of Environmental Conservation to reject Omni Recycling of Brentwood’s application for a facility that will move 2,300 tons a day of construction debris and solid waste.
“We don’t need our roads to continue deteriorating from the abudance of tractor-trailers and trucks that would be coming into Brentwood,” Suffolk County Legislator Sam Gonzalez said.
The opposition isn’t just in Suffolk County. It can be heard along the LIRR tracks through Nassau and into Queens, where opponents say antiquated locomotives haul the waste in open rail cars, creating noise and pollution for 1.5 million people along the tracks.
Mary Parisen Lavelle, with Civics United for Railroad Environmental Solutions, says the Brentwood facility will bring even more.
“At three in the morning, you hear houses being shaken, people awaken. Emissions, I mean, people have to cover their noses,” she told CBS2’s Carolyn Gusoff.
Omni Recycling’s application says it will have no significant environmental impact. The company did not respond to requests for comment.
The DEC is reviewing public comments on the proposed facility and has not yet said when it will rule. After reviewing the comments, the DEC will prepare a response, which may require additional information from the applicant. The DEC will issue its decision on the permit after this response is complete.
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