State to Test "Smelly" Air from Bridgeton Landfill
Monday, February 4, 2013
ST. LOUIS - The Bridgeton Sanitary Landfill, just north of Lambert-St. Louis International Airport, has been smoldering underground since last summer, and people who live nearby say the air seems to be getting worse. They've been calling and complaining about headaches and illnesses for months and, after much coaxing by environmentalists, the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, on Friday agreed to test the air.
Kathleen Logan Smith, executive director of the Missouri Coalition for the Environment, said the phones at her organization have been ringing like crazy.
"They're complaining of sickness and symptoms, and pets are getting sick, and people are getting sick," she said.
The company that owns the landfill tested the air once, last August, but people say it seems to be getting worse and they've been asking for more testing to find out if their health is at risk. Late last week, the St. Louis County Department of Health inspected the landfill and found the odors in violation of air quality standards. On Friday the Missouri Department of Natural Resources issued an order accusing the Bridgeton Landfill of creating a public nuisance. DNR said it will do its own air testing and require the company to reimburse the state for the cost.
People who live in the area have told Kathleen Logan Smith that they don't know whether they should even let their children play outside.
"People need some information about how to keep their families healthy and safe at a time when they could be breathing carcinogens," said Smith.
She's looking for more transparency on the part of Bridgeton Landfill and the state.
"I want them to tell people what they're being exposed to," Smith asserted. "I want them to update people on the progress at the site because fighting a landfill fire is a long-term, challenging project."
The landfill is located next to a Superfund site containing radioactive waste, and officials said the underground fire has not spread there.
Republic Services, which owns the landfill, said it's upgrading its gas-management systems and issued a statement last month apologizing for "the inconvenience." The results of the new round of air testing will be sent to the Missouri Health Department to evaluate public health concerns.
DNR information is at dnr.mo.gov.
get more stories like this via email
RALEIGH, N.C. -- More than $1 million in COVID-19 relief grants are helping rural organizations increase their focus on locally sourced food relief…
DES MOINES, Iowa -- This fall, the Iowa Utilities Board is hosting meetings to inform the public about a proposed underground pipeline, which would …
MANDAN, N.D. -- North Dakota has had nearly 18,000 job openings in recent months, with roughly 1,000 in construction. A labor leader in the trades …
Health and Wellness
DAYTON, Ohio -- An Ohio county is taking a trauma-informed approach to its work on preventing marijuana use in teens. As marijuana policy changes …
DENVER -- As Congress considers making significant investments in the nation's child-care system, children's advocates say now is the time to make …
MONTEREY BAY, Calif. - This week, conservation groups are celebrating Sea Otter Awareness Week with online and in-person events across the state…
LAS VEGAS, Nev. - Admission to any state park in Nevada is free this coming Saturday, as part of the first Nevada Public Lands Week - with a series …
HARRISBURG, Pa. - A new Redistricting Advisory Council announced last week by Gov. Tom Wolf's office will focus on reducing gerrymandering as new …