Rural Landfill

A piece of property outside Hamilton has become what neighbors are calling a landfill. The project was originally approved for a personal recreation field.

Your June 28 article, “EPA to connect homes affected by landfill to public water system,” made us wonder if the 18-acre landfill in Hamilton is another Hidden Lane landfill. Is history repeating itself?

It has been more than five months since Cattail LC wrote a letter to the Loudoun Board of Supervisors and released an 8-minute video – posted at LoudounRuralLandfills.com – on the negative effects of the landfill, otherwise referred to and approved by the county as a “personal recreational field.” The county has taken minimal action on this issue beyond issuing a stop-work order seven months ago because the landfill is 10-feet higher than the county permitted.

Like the Hidden Lane landfill, the Hamilton landfill includes untested and undocumented demolition and construction debris. It is estimated that the landfill contains 420,000 to 500,000 cubic yards of waste, or 28,000 to 34,000 truckloads. It rises some 30 feet and dominates a quarter-mile-long boundary with neighboring conservation land. Liquid waste has also been dumped in the Hamilton landfill. The revenue from dumping could potentially have been in the millions of dollars.

No one knows what is in the waste because, to my knowledge, there were no manifests from dumpers and because the groundwater and surface water have not been tested. The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, or VDEQ, was asked if it would certify that the landfill does not contain hazardous waste; it refused to do so.

Knowing this, who would allow their child to drink water affected by this landfill?

In a 2005 Connection newspaper article about the Hidden Valley landfill, Terrance Wharton, who at the time was director of engineering for Loudoun County, stated, “A lot of things went in there that should not have We didn’t know what was going in there.”

Ditto for the Hamilton landfill. We don’t know what has been dumped. There are no records. No testing. No monitoring wells.

Why don’t we learn from our past mistakes? How long will the community have to wait for the county to install monitoring wells?

The Board of Supervisors and the county need to act swiftly to correct this egregious mistake and to protect residents and the environment. We don't want to discover that the Hamilton landfill is the next EPA Superfund site in Loudoun County. Anything less than monitoring is irresponsible.

 

Joyce Harris

Hamilton

(4) comments

BobOhneiserEsq

DavisB . I hope you are not suggesting that garbage is not a big problem worldwide and apparently also locally. Why is garbage handling by the county not on the BOS agenda? Is it less important than the statue by the courthouse which has been frequently on the agenda? The BOS agenda is the issue for the Chairman and to work with the other Supervisors to form at least a majority willing to take positive action for the benefit of the Loudoun community. Using your phrase the current Chair acts more like a queen than a leader. The current leader of the BOS seems to be the Leesburg Supervisor (former Mayor Umstaddt) who I am surprised isn't the leader of the local democratic party and setting the agenda for the BOS.


BobOhneiserEsq

I am surprised and disappointed the Chair of the Board of Supervisors doesn't put processing waste in Loudoun on the agenda for board disposal as this is obviously a problem. What is so complicated about expecting a board of supervisors (especially the Chair who sets the agenda) to focus on major issues in the county and actually work on them to completion with full transparency to the public they represent. When did burying un-identified garbage become OK?

DavisB

"When did burying un-identified garbage become OK?" - the cure reply would have to be something about your campaign to be king of the Supervisors, but I would never post something like that

BobP

This issue was brought up last year with the BoS regarding another location. They did nothing except make excuses. This board, in general, is big on talk but small on meaningful action.

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