BLUE RIDGE ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENSE LEAGUE
PO Box 88 ~
Glendale Springs, North Carolina 28629 ~ Phone
(336) 982-2691 ~ Fax (336) 982-2954 ~ Email:
CITIZENS FOR A SAFE ENVIRONMENT
3204 Mt. Misery Road
Leland, NC 28451
JULY 10, 2004
Teri Holdren (910) 371-1263
Elsie Peterson (910) 655-2658
Claude Ward (910) 604-0214
PROTESTS AUTO FLUFF LANDFILL
Concerned citizens gathered in Leland to
protest the siting of an auto fluff landfill.
Major issues were the presence of hazardous
materials, the track record of the company
wanting to bring the landfill, the resulting
decrease of property values, and the economic
future of the Cape Fear area.
Auto fluff is the residue from the recycling of
scrap metal. It contains many hazardous materials
and had been declared "Hazardous Waste"
by the State of California. It is one of the
leading sources of mercury contamination. With
the Riegelwood pulp & paper mill and the
coal-fired Sutton power plant representing the
other two leading sources, residents don't see
any advantage in becoming home to a third.
Toluene, xylenes, and trichloroethylene, all
carcinogens found in auto fluff, readily pass
through state of the art HDPE landfill liners in
one to thirteen days according to the U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency. The Associated
Press listed the Cape Fear as North Carolina's
most toxic river in September of 1998.
Gean Seay of Swamp Watch said, "We
desperately need someone to take the industries
and politicians to task and get this river
cleaned up, not add more to its burden."
Hugo Neu, the New York-based company wanting to
locate on Mt. Misery Road, has known its share of
labor disputes with worker unions and the
National Labor Relations Board. In addition, it
was found guilty of discharging PCBs into the Los
Angeles Harbor over a 3-year period. The
company's endorsement by riverkeepers in Hugo Neu
locations provides little comfort to the people
of Brunswick County due to riverkeeper funding
provided by the scrap metal giant. "It's
more like a tap on the shoulder instead of a
knock on the head," said Teri Holden, member
of the group. As northern landfill sites fill up
and come under EPA litigation, such as the
Butternuts Landfill in New York where Hugo Neu
has been ordered to clean up and reimburse the
government for past clean up expenses, the
company is forced to look south in its search for
new landfill sites. This undertaking grows more
difficult since a bill passed in the Clinton term
denying Superfund status for auto fluff.
Residents believe the increased traffic and the
presence of 170 acres of hazardous auto fluff
piled 300 feet high* (only 32 feet lower than the
two smoke stacks at the Sutton power plant) will
cause property values to plummet and only attract
similar industry. Claude Ward of the Blue Ridge
Environmental Defense League, said, "This
landfill would be nothing more than a 300-foot
high* pile of shredded junk yard, minus the
metal. It will prevent clean industry from coming
in and damage the local economy."
The Brunswick Citizens for a Safe Environment
invite anyone interested in helping to join them
for weekly meetings on each Monday night at 6:30.
Meetings are held in their new headquarters
located at 3204 Mt. Misery Road in Leland.
* Hugo Neu now says the landfill
will stand 350 feet high. - rev.
online July 27, 2004
More info on
Hugo Neu (pictures, auto fluff fact sheet,
and additional info.)