The city of Biddeford on Tuesday issued a preliminary vote to enter into a purchase-and-sale agreement with Vermont-based Casella Waste Systems to buy the Maine Energy Recovery Co. trash incinerator and eventually shut it down. In related news, the Maine Board of Environmental Protection yesterday voted against an appeal of its recent decision to allow an expansion of the Juniper Ridge Landfill in Old Town. The state-owned landfill is operated by Casella.
Casella and Biddeford officials in June reached an agreement to sell the city the incinerator for $6.6 million, halt operations and demolish it by the end of 2013, according to a press release. A final vote on the agreement, however is still scheduled for July 31.
In related news, the BEP upheld the Maine Department of Environmental Protection's January decision to approve increasing the Juniper Ridge Landfill's size by 9.35 million cubic yards, much less than Casella's proposed 21.9 million-cubic-yard expansion, the Bangor Daily News reported. Casella said the landfill at its current size is projected to reach capacity in five years, and the DEP said the approved expansion would add as much as 10 years to that time frame. Old Town resident Ed Spencer appealed the decision, arguing that much new capacity isn't needed in the next decade. The BEP, however, nixed his appeal during its meeting yesterday. Casella and the state can now begin the process of filing an application for the expansion.
Casella has proposed sending trash that now goes to MERC to Juniper Ridge when the Biddeford facility shuts down.