This post has been reprinted here from a Facebook entry. Trying to say the same thing a different way may tend to confuse some folks, and since this gets kind of confusing anyway, one post says it all.
Well, well, well. It’s back. As you all may recall, we left the Jungo Road Landfill in limbo after NDEP approved the final permits in 2012 for Recology to move ahead. Humboldt County hired legal resource, April, 2013, to negotiate the host agreement in good faith. As time marched on, Humboldt County discovered Recology was never able to negotiate a lease with New Nevada Resources, so that the landfill could be built and operated.
Now, New Nevada Resources is asking the county to move ahead to negotiate a host agreement with them. New Nevada Resources is not named on the Humboldt County Conditional Use Permit; and not named as the Operator on the NDEP permits. Seems to me there are many actions that should be taken before asking the County to spend time and money negotiating a host agreement. It appears New Nevada Resources will begin working on that with the NDEP. The permit does state ownership of operations can be transferred assuming the new owner can demonstrate financial responsibility. See current permit here: http://ndep.nv.gov/bwm/docs/jungo_permit_final.pdf.
New Nevada Resources is privately held, and speaks to the beauty of Nevada land with a business emphasis on solar, wind and geothermal. Doesn’t sound like a want to be landfill operator to me. Sounds like the kind of positive business we’d want in Nevada vs. a huge dump of non-recyclable waste over an active aquifer. Web site: http://www.newnevadaresources.com/new-nevada-resources-about-us.asp While they are pro-development and state they will work with many industries for long term profits, surely a huge landfill isn’t considered a sustainable source of profits. Even Recology has publicly stated that landfills aren’t the ticket, recycling is; as states like California mandate the reduction of non-recyclable waste.
The discussion about entering into host agreement negotiation is scheduled for the January 5th Humboldt County Commissioner meeting. See item 13: http://www.hcnv.us:1403/cgi-bin/caw101?Date=20150105 Surely, the commissioners will deem the question premature at this time. There are many questions:
• What about County question 1- 2011? This was passed by approx. 70% of voters indicating the will of the majority of citizens intent to not have this landfill or any refuse disposal site other than what is needed to satisfy the requirements of the residents of the county. Why is it ASSUMED the Jungo Landfill is not subject to this? Has any independent legal review (outside of Humboldt County or Recology) weighed in on this?
• Is New Nevada Resources aware of the holes in the business case justifying this project or Dr. Lee’s environmental report that the NDEP poo-pooed?
• What will New Nevada Resources’ business model be? Will they have business partners? Are they looking to get waste from other than CA? Different types of waste? If yes, more permit changes. Will they turn around if/when a host agreement might be reached and sell the dump back to Recology? Maybe to another entity the county and NDEP is not aware of?
• The conditional use permit (CUP) for this project was issued in 2007 for 3 years. Recology did nothing. In 2011, the courts ruled the CUP would be extended 5 years, until December, 2016. Recology, again, was unable to move anything ahead once they received the state permit. In other words, New Nevada Land has less than two years to re-visit all permits and START the operation of the landfill. This does not mean start construction or to begin negotiations with operators but to actually start receiving waste. This is not realistically feasible. Does New Nevada Resources have contracts for acceptance or hauling of refuse? Do they have agreements with Union Pacific Railroad to haul the waste? Will they be able to haul waste thru California to Nevada borders without being required to perform an environmental impact study as Recology was required to do from San Francisco to the Ostrum landfill? If the dump is not up and running by Dec. 2016 and the county refuses to grant another extension, what will New Nevada Resources do?
It’s well past time to dump this dump. The economics aren’t positive, the environmental issues are real and the people have spoken. If the Commissioners are still afraid of being sued as individuals performing in the capacity of an elected official, get a real legal opinion on this outside the county. And do your job based on what the citizens have asked you to do time and time again. Nip this in the bud today.
You can call or email the Commissioners, or attend the Jan 5th meeting to express your views on this recent development.
And yes, this is a picture of the Jungo Playa flooded during the winter. Of course, the NDEP says this never happens.
Update: After a lively discussion, this matter was tabled pending the resolution of various questions, some of which have been outlined above. Stay tuned!