Reported by the Macon Telegraph last week:
A Middle Georgia landfill is accepting test loads of coal ash waste this week from a historic Tennessee spill.
The Veolia landfill in the Taylor County town of Mauk is vying to receive the roughly 5.4 million cubic yards of waste from the spill.
Earlier this week, the federal Environmental Protection Agency pronounced the December spill in Harriman, Tenn., “one of the largest and most serious environmental releases in American history.”
Test loads of that dredged and dried material started traveling by train Monday to two landfills, one in Alabama and one in Georgia, TVA spokesman Gil Francis said. He said he did not know which landfills were the destination.
But Jeff Cown, solid waste program manager for the Georgia Environmental Protection Division, said the ash is headed for the Veolia Environmental Services landfill in the Taylor County town of Mauk.
With one of the largest capacities of any landfill in Georgia — almost 48 million cubic yards — the Veolia landfill at Mauk has plenty of space for the ash. According to the Georgia Environmental Protection Division, the landfill isn’t expected to fill until 2076.
Veolia ES is a division of Veolia Environnement, which says it is the world’s largest waste services company. Veolia is the latest in a string of private companies to own the Mauk landfill.
Residents of Taylor and Talbot counties contacted this week knew little or nothing about the coal ash coming to Mauk. Most of them expressed concern, noting that the landfill is perched on sandy soils and the water table is only 20 to 30 feet down.
State Rep. Debbie Buckner, who lives in nearby Junction City, was dismayed to learn of the coal ash shipments to the Mauk landfill, which towers above the trees enough to have earned the nickname “Mount Trashmore” from Buckner and Woodall.The decision to dump this waste in Taylor County will have a enormous effect on water, natural resources & the environment not only in Taylor Co., but in other areas as well.