Thursday, October 15, 2009


As previously noted in this blog, landfills are an issue that occupies the thoughts of few individuals until the site or associated truck traffic impacts their neighborhood. NIMBY stands for "Not in my backyard" and it normally applies to the placement of some undesirable facility or activity. However, some in Dorchester County may now invoke the acronym in response to neighboring Charleston County's plan (as reported in the Post & Courier) to send a portion of their waste stream beyond their borders to the Oakridge Landfill in Dorchester County.

Audubon's Francis Beidler Forest shares a property line with the Oakridge Landfill along Four Holes Swamp's end run to the Edisto River. The capacity of this or any landfill is not infinite and the Oakridge Landfill cannot expand into the swamp. Once full, the site must close and a new site opened to accept our continuing waste stream. Although waste is inevitable, there are ways to minimize its impact. Reduce, reuse, and recycle remain sound pieces of advice. All three actions eliminate or minimize the amount of waste entering our landfills. This saves space in the landfill and reduces transportation costs, including wear on the roads.

We are quickly reaching the point where NIMBY will not be feasible due to high transportation costs and the fact that our backyards are getting closer together! Take a cue from nature...reduce, reuse, and recycle!

Image by Mark Musselman

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