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State, Local Leaders Ponder Waste Burning

At the Air Resources Residential Waste Burning Workshop in Jamestown Wednesday, local and state officials along with area residents discussed the Board´s proposal to prohibit burn barrels and home refuse burning.

The Board conducted the workshop to get public input on how begin the plan. The primary reason for the state´s position is major health risks that are caused by residues left behind after the fire goes out. Dioxins are cancer causing elements linked to severe reproductive and developmental problems in animals and humans. Burn barrels don´t burn hot enough to destroy the chemicals used to coat paper products and styrofoam.

Local solid waste officials throughout the state concur with the proposed ban but do not know just how much paper products are in the waste cycle. The situation makes it difficult because either recycling or separate trash disposal systems will have to be implemented and the extra cost of those measures may be directed towards residents and local jurisdictions.