Today I went to the New Vineyard transfer station to return recyclables, pay $3 to unload one bag of waste, and dump my pellet stove/wood stove ashes in the burn pile. While I did the first two chores without issue, I was told by staff that they can no longer accept ashes because a state inspector found someone had dumped ashes that contained melted plastics and/or other debris.

OK, so now what am I and everyone else who has tried to do the right thing and bring our ashes to the dump, where they can be consolidated and attended to by those who know best, supposed to do? We are told we can’t do this anymore, but we are not told what we can do that instead. The ashes and the ash problem are not going away. They must be dealt with one way or another, and they will be.

Where they will end up now is anyone’s guess, but my guess is that wherever that is, until we are told otherwise, it won’t be near as good a place as the dump. It will likely be on the side of the road, in a field, in the woods, or by or in a stream. This is not desirable by any means, but those ashes will be disposed of in some way or another.

Because one person did something wrong, many more will forced to do something perhaps even more wrong and we will all suffer the result. It makes no sense from any perspective. We need thoughtful, reasoned solutions from our state overseers, not a pointed finger.


George Christie

New Vineyard

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