On January 18th the Haralson County, Georgia Planning Commission voted 4-0 to recommend that the Haralson County Commissioners DENY approval for what would become the largest landfill in Georgia.
The fight is not over yet. On February 15th, the Board of County Commissioners will hold their hearing. The Commissioners are then scheduled to make a final decision by March 1st.
This battle started two years ago. Those concerned about the megalandfill formed the Haralson County Alliance for Responsible Waste Management.
CEDS was retained to assist in forming a strategy to protect County residents from landfill impacts. Our recommended strategy centered on minimizing the need for a landfill by maximizing source reduction, recycling, composting and other measures that could slash waste volume by 30% to 80%. Fortunately, Georgia and other southeast states have the largest concentration in the U.S. of industries utilizing recyclables as feedstock. Unfortunately, recycling is stymied by the abundance of landfills in Georgia and low landfill tipping fees. The proposed megalandfill would exacerbate this problem. CEDS created a webpage providing the science regarding landfill impacts and waste reduction benefits: https://ceds.org/hcarwm/.
CEDS also assisted the Alliance in finding and engaging the Georgia law firm that has stopped more poorly planned waste facilities than any other – Stack & Associates. Landfill battles are seldom won with just expert witnesses and attorneys alone. A showing of strong public opposition and, preferably, an equally strong showing of support for landfill alternatives is frequently of even greatest importance in achieving victory.
To this end, CEDS assisted the Alliance in launching a petition drive that eventually gathered signatures from an amazing 15% of all Haralson County residents! Two-thirds of the online petition signers provided reasons why they believed the megalandfill was wrong for Haralson County. These articulate and well-founded reasons were a key factor prompting the vote of Planning Commission denial recommendation.
Following are links to the testimony and documents submitted by Alliance leaders and their law firm Stack & Associates:
And here key points regarding the impact of the megalandfill on Haralson quality of life: