Highway 6 Landfill Is Such Trash, Say Waller County Folks

Members of the Stop Highway 6 Landfill coalition are warning folks that the proposed Waller County landfill is going to spoil the rural landscape, poison the water supply and pollute our schoolchildren.

Project officials say this is a bunch of rubbish.

Pending state approval, the 723-acre site -- 223 acres have been set aside for the dump while the rest will act as a buffer to treat waste -- will sit near the junction of Highway 290 on the east side of Highway 6.

Though it's located in Waller County, only five percent of the trash produced by Waller County residents will go there; instead, the landfill will be piled high with Harris County's waste products.

While Oscar the Grouch is probably super stoked, Waller County peeps are steaming mad. They claim that the dump, which will be built upon a recharge area of Chico Aquifer and near Clear Creek, will fudge up traffic that's traveling from the Houston area to points north like College Station, not to mention jack up the water supply.

"It's going be an absolute traffic nightmare, especially heading north [on Highway 6]," says Houston-based environmentalist and Blackwood Educational Land Institute director Cath Conlon about the site that's located approximately three miles from Hempstead High School and four miles from Prairie View A&M. "Also, they're digging a 250-acre hole that's 90 feet deep and putting in a liner that has been proven to leak."

According to a study recently released by Pintail Landfill LLC, the company in charge of the project, the dump will "generate far less traffic than a subdivision, restaurant or discount superstore," says the company about the analysis that was required by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and the Texas Department of Transportation.

"The study, conducted by Lee Engineering, showed that traffic associated with Pintail is projected to make up less than 1.5 percent of the traffic on Highway 6 and less than one percent of the traffic on U.S. 290."

As far as contamination of the drinking-water supply, the Georgia-based Green Group Holdings (the managing entity of Pintail Landfill, LLC) says that the hole in the ground will be outfitted with double lining, a sophisticated drainage system and a fancy-pants groundwater monitoring system.

If Pintail Landfill gets the green light, the privately funded project that the company once considered building on the Katy Prairie will take approximately four years to pull off. If for some reason everything falls through, maybe the next best option is the Astrodome?

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Steve Jansen is a contributing writer for the Houston Press.
Contact: Steve Jansen