July 8, 2011

Might Auburn decision reduce Dryden truck traffic?

For now, anyway?

I was doing some editing Wednesday morning in the Dryden Community Center Cafe, sitting at the table that pretty much points into the four corners intersection. At one point I looked up and saw a convoy of Barber & DeLine water trucks going by, the first of which was labeled "brine wastewater".

Now I can't be sure, as I didn't see where the trucks originated and I didn't race to my car to follow them to their destination, but it seems at least reasonably possible that those trucks were carrying fracking wastewater to Auburn, where the wastewater treatment plant has been accepting it.

Auburn won't be accepting it any longer. By a 3-1 vote last night, City Council voted not to take those loads, despite the money they were bringing in:

The city has been under public pressure from the Cayuga Anti-Fracking Alliance to enact the ban. Several group members, including Beth Beer Cuddy, of Auburn, spoke before the vote. Afterward Cuddy said she was pleased with the outcome.

"I think it sends a strong message that Auburn is not going to be a dumping ground for the natural gas industry,'' she said.

The ban leaves the city with a big budget hole to fill. Auburn projected to receive $600,000 over the next year by accepting the waste at its wastewater treatment plant. However, several of those companies stopped dumping their waste when Cuddy's group started protesting several weeks ago.

Opponents say the wastewater contains high concentrations of salt and cancer-causing petroleum and radioactive agents and that the city's treatment plant is not equipped to remove those products before discharging them into the Owasco River. The stream drains into the Seneca River, which empties into Lake Ontario.

Like I said, I can't be sure that's where those trucks were headed, but it really brought home how many connections we're suddenly going to notice if fracking takes off in the area.

While at the Cafe, I also saw part of an old airplane body go by, which I'm guessing was for the amazing Tommy Come Home project, running on Southword Road.

Posted by simon at July 8, 2011 7:46 AM in ,
Note on photos