Madison County News
(Wampsville, NY – Dec. 2012) Agricultural plastic can now be dropped off at any of the county’s transfer stations or at the main landfill site on Buyea Road in Lincoln. The Madison County Board of Supervisors approved a contract to supply agricultural plastic to JBI, Inc., of Niagara Falls for conversion of plastic to oil during their evening board meeting Nov. 27.
“Now that the contract is approved, we can move forward with the collection of ag plastic,” said James A. Zecca, director of the Department of Solid Waste and Sanitation. “Collecting ag plastic for recycling will help the environment, save space in our county landfill and help solve a longstanding problem for area farmers. The plan is to turn plastic back into usable diesel fuel.”
Ag plastic can be dropped off at transfer stations in Cazenovia, Sullivan and Hamilton and behind the ARC Recycling Center at the main landfill on Buyea Road in Lincoln during regular operating hours at these facilities.
In the past, ag plastic was buried or burned, as there was no company willing to recycle this sometimes very contaminated material. Farmers had no choice but to burn or burry the ag plastic; however, burning any plastic releases harmful carcinogens into the air and is now illegal in New York. As of October 2009, the state Department of Environmental Conservation regulations prohibit burning of any plastics (including horticultural mulch film, dairy bunk silo covers and pesticide containers) or any other non-organic trash in burn barrels or open fires.
Madison County believes that it has found a solution to effectively recycle ag and rigid plastic. These efforts are arousing the interest of neighboring counties that have expressed interested in learning more about this new process and pledging to support Madison County’s efforts.
“Everyone wants more details and wants to know when we plan to start the program,” Zecca said. “I have been fielding calls from all over Madison County and the surrounding counties regarding the ag plastic drop-off program.”
JBI, Inc., has discovered a way to “crack the code” – turn plastic back into diesel fuel. Their plant in Niagara Falls is an innovative North American fuel company that transforms unsorted, unwashed waste plastic into ultra-clean, ultra-low sulfur fuel without the need for refinement.
JBI is committed to environmental sustainability by diverting plastic waste from landfill and potential incineration. Diversion of items that don’t biodegrade and take up space in the landfill is a concept that has long been the mantra for the Madison County Department of Solid Waste.
“We are extremely eager to move forward with this program,” said Jim Goldstein, chairman of the Madison County Solid Waste Committee. “The first step is to start collecting ag and rigid plastic from in and around Madison County, baling it and shipping it to the Niagara Falls facility, where it will be turned into clean diesel fuel.
“We are confident that as this program evolves, JBI will realize the untapped potential here in Madison County and the surrounding counties and commit to establishing a presence here in Madison County.”