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EPA looking into STX manhole emissions

 
sttanon
(@sttanon)
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https://viconsortium.com/vi-health/virgin-islands-epa-wma-and-dpnr-commit-to-addressing-foul-oder-emanating-from-anguilla-landfill

 

Will be curious to see now that Limetree is shuttered results of this.... Still find it interesting that everyone wanted to blame refinery for emissions and turns out coulda been coming from landfill that EPA has been on government's ass about for years...

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Topic starter Posted : July 23, 2021 7:35 am
janeinstx liked
Gator's Mom
(@gators_mom)
Trusted Member
Posted by: @sttanon

https://viconsortium.com/vi-health/virgin-islands-epa-wma-and-dpnr-commit-to-addressing-foul-oder-emanating-from-anguilla-landfill

 

Will be curious to see now that Limetree is shuttered results of this.... Still find it interesting that everyone wanted to blame refinery for emissions and turns out coulda been coming from landfill that EPA has been on government's ass about for years...

Limetree is not shuttered because there is a foul smell coming from the dump. Foul odors were coming from Limetree AND the dump. And let's not forget the refinery's flairs and toxic oil spray over the fence line neighborhoods.

But while we're looking for other smell sources - what about that putrid hydrogen sulfide smell coming from the rotting Sargassum on the beaches?  

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Posted : July 23, 2021 9:11 am
Alana33 liked
sttanon
(@sttanon)
Advanced Member
Posted by: @gators_mom

Limetree is not shuttered because there is a foul smell coming from the dump. Foul odors were coming from Limetree AND the dump. And let's not forget the refinery's flairs and toxic oil spray over the fence line neighborhoods.

When odors started all fingers pointed at refinery until EPA found out about the manhole and how off the scale the levels were. I am not going to say that oil spray was right in any way BUT flare towers do exist at any refinery as a safety measure.

The point I was trying to make is that the VI govt is no innocent babe in the woods when it comes to polluting. The STX landfill has been something the EPA has been on govt's behind about for years to no avail. When the Bovoni landfill in St. Thomas caught fire one time, the entire island at noon almost looked like sun was getting ready to set because sky was so dark from the black smoke.

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Topic starter Posted : July 23, 2021 9:30 am
Gator's Mom
(@gators_mom)
Trusted Member

Years ago, we sat next to a young woman on a plane flying to STT. She had injured her ring finger transporting her luggage and her hand and finger swelled enormously as we reached altitude. By the time we landed at STT she was in pain - so we started looking for someone to cut her wedding ring off of her enormously swollen hand. We found a welder friend with tools who was working at the Bovoni dump. We drove her into the landfill with its fires and toxic smells - found John and got the ring cut off just in time.  Bovoni added terror to the already difficult day she was having and we ended up taking her right back to the airport so she could catch the next plane AWAY from the craziness.

The landfills are terrible on both islands. The difficulty is finding an alternative that resolves the environmental issues and gets rid of the trash. This is not just a VI or EPA issue - it's much bigger than that. I don't think the VI or US governments have any clue to how to handle trash here that doesn't transfer the pollution somewhere else. If it's not in the land - then it's in the air or in the water. Awful and we all contribute because we have not clue what else to do either.

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Posted : July 23, 2021 10:45 am
daveb722
(@daveb722)
Trusted Member

Recycling is a good start.  Canada does it right, unfortunately I think we would just find a lot of trash on the sides of the road if we implemented something as strict as them.  When my now wife lived in Niagara Falls, Canada, they had to sort their garbage.  One bin was for compostable items, one was news papers and one was for bottles/cans.  Your were then allowed one garbage bag per home or had to pay for additional bags.  It would be extremely hard to implement here and it's hard for us to just throw everything in the trash bins.  We do take our cans to leatherback now, so thats a plus.

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Posted : July 23, 2021 1:12 pm
jaldeborgh
(@jaldeborgh)
Advanced Member

Recycling has to be made simple and clear before you try and force it on people, otherwise many will ignore the process and the pollution will be done under the cover of darkness and in irresponsible ways.  The countries with high recycling rates all have mature systems that easily facilitate the process as well as an education system so that the public knows how to use the system.  I for one would love to see an aggressive recycling infrastructure initiative, when my adult child come visit they are disappointed this isn’t a higher government priority given the natural beauty of the island and fragile environment.  I for one am not holding my breath in anticipation of significant or rapid real world change in how waste is handled in the territory.

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Posted : July 23, 2021 5:47 pm
jaldeborgh
(@jaldeborgh)
Advanced Member
Posted by: @gators_mom

Foul odors were coming from Limetree AND the dump.

It’s my understanding that once the manhole cover(s) were properly put back in place the stench went away.  There is a simple A/B test that can run to clearly resolve the question.  Now that the refinery isn’t operating open the culprit manhole covers again and see if the stench returns and measure the ppm of the gas. That would answer the question fairly conclusively and with real data to back it up as we have EPA measurements from the period people were complaining about the stench.  Once the test is complete, close the manholes again and confirm the stench is contained once again.  Shouldn’t take very long and cost almost nothing and the government could ask the EPA to provide oversight of the test. 

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Posted : July 23, 2021 6:02 pm
Scubadoo
(@Scubadoo)
Trusted Member
Posted by: @gators_mom

The landfills are terrible on both islands. The difficulty is finding an alternative that resolves the environmental issues and gets rid of the trash. This is not just a VI or EPA issue - it's much bigger than that. I don't think the VI or US governments have any clue to how to handle trash here that doesn't transfer the pollution somewhere else. If it's not in the land - then it's in the air or in the water. Awful and we all contribute because we have not clue what else to do either.

We were recycling here on STX on a regular basis.  Then when COVID hit there was nothing to do with the recyclables, no place to take it.  So it all, everything that had already been sorted, went into the trash bin.  I'm still not aware there is anything we can do with the recyclables.

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Posted : July 23, 2021 11:55 pm
daveb722
(@daveb722)
Trusted Member

@Scubadoo Leatherback will take back rinsed out cans, not crushed.  They actually have a can crusher to make bales with them.  From there, not sure what they do with them.

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Posted : July 24, 2021 7:57 am
Scubadoo
(@Scubadoo)
Trusted Member
Posted by: @daveb722

@Scubadoo Leatherback will take back rinsed out cans, not crushed.  They actually have a can crusher to make bales with them.  From there, not sure what they do with them.

Aluminum only I assume.  I suspected someplace would take aluminum cans.  Plastics, glass and steel we are SOL.   I actually don't use any aluminum myself.

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Posted : July 24, 2021 8:21 am
janeinstx
(@janeinstx)
Trusted Member

Monitoring the Air Near Limetree Bay | US EPA

 

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Posted : July 26, 2021 7:12 am
vicanuck
(@vicanuck)
Expert
Posted by: @gators_mom

The difficulty is finding an alternative that resolves the environmental issues and gets rid of the trash.

The VI had a great opportunity to rid itself of the landfills and trash while generating enough energy to drive rates significantly lower with the Alpine waste to energy proposal.

Sadly, our misguided senators once again couldn't see the forest for the trees and voted against this mature technology that's in place all over the world.

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Posted : July 26, 2021 8:21 am
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