Here is what we know about the proposed Energy Answers Incinerator:
- The Energy Answers Incinerator, if constructed, would be the largest trash burning incinerator in the nation.
- The incinerator would be less than a mile from Benjamin Franklin High School and Curtis Bay Elementary School in Curtis Bay, a community in Baltimore.
- There is a Maryland state law that does not allow incinerators to be constructed a mile from a school. Nonetheless, the project has been permitted.
- The incinerator would be able to burn 4,000 tons of waste per day. It would generate electricity by burning different kinds of trash, including plastic, rubber, vinyl, and metal, in addition to regular household garbage.
- The incinerator is permitted to release 240 pounds of mercury per year, which could make it one of the largest mercury emitters in the state. Other pollutants include NOx, lead, dioxins, and particulate matter which are linked to cancer, heart disease, increased risk of diabetes, aggravated asthma and other respiratory problems.
- Waste to Energy incinerators emit more pollutants per hour of energy produced than the largest coal-fired power plants in Maryland.
- Energy Answers failed to meet the deadline to begin construction outlined in its original permit. The company received an extension of its permit to construct in 2012 and was given until August 6th 2013 to finalize its financing contracts and start construction. The Maryland Department of Environment is currently responding to a request to determine whether or not Energy Answers met the August 6th deadline.
Find out more in this report on Waste to Energy Incinerators in Maryland by the Environmental Integrity Project.