Product Stewardship: How To Create Less Trash

We tackle the question of what role manufacturers, consumers and government should play in reducing the amount of trash we create when we throw out packaging or old products. Also, a proposed Rail Spur in Middlebury would accommodate the OMYA Corporation’s freight needs. And, celebrating the election of Madeleine Kunin 25 years ago.

Midday Newscast: November 20, 2008

State Senator John Campbell says a woman called and threatened to blow up his house for wanting to introduce a same sex marriage bill next year; Gov. Jim Douglas says he does not want to tap into the state rainy day fund to help deal with a $63 million budget deficit; more…

State cracks down on compost operations

The state is cracking down on two large-scale composting operations, and the legal actions may force both to shut down. But some critics complain of selective enforcement when it comes to pollution under Act 250 in Vermont.

Critics say OMYA permit is illegal

A federal judge has ruled that chemicals leaking from Omya’s landfills in Pittsford could threaten human health. But the state is close to granting Omya a permit that would allow the company to keep operating the waste site for two more years.

State employee: Agency violates law in issuing permit

An employee of the Agency of Natural Resources says the department dragged its feet in enforcing the law and cracking down on a company for allegedly allowing  toxic chemicals to migrate from its plant site to groundwater and neighbors’ wells.

Creating More Housing at Affordable Prices

Affordably priced housing can be hard to come by in Vermont, with one estimate saying the median house price across the state is $206,000. We talk with two builders who have differing viewpoints on how to create more affordably priced housing. Also, reporter Bruce Edwards on an extensive study about the health and environemntal impact of Omya’s mining operations in Florence, Vermont.

Chemical contaminant found in water flowing from quarry

A chemical contaminant used in blasting has been found in water flowing from a quarry operated by the Omya Corporation in Pittsford. The chemical is perchlorate. Environmentalists say it’s been linked to a variety of health impacts. But an Omya official says the chemical has not been detected off the company’s property, and that more research will be done.