Assemblyman William Colton has been urging lawmakers not to build at the site of a former incinerator at Bay 41st Street off Gravesend Bay for over two years. Now, that site is slated to become a waste transfer station and Colton is having none of it.
“For more than 30 years, that incinerator spewed contaminants into the land, water and air and the affects are still being felt by residents today,” Colton said to the New York Post. “There’s no way we’re going to allow those contaminants to be dug up and pose another threat to the community.”
Department of Environmental Protection Commissioner Joseph Martens recently agreed to the $87.7 million city project for a transfer site that would process and ship out 4,000 tons of trash.
If the waste transfer site were to be built, Colton and environmental groups believe that the toxic incinerator ash from the former waste site will resurface due to the dredging that is needed to give trash barges to access the site.
Groups say that the ash from the incinerator caused a spike in cancer and asthma rates in the area and negatively affected the flora and fauna in the bay. If the project were to go ahead, the same consequences could be repeated. Also, depending on the wind and tides, newly dug up ash would travel to other waterways in Southern Brooklyn and cause severe damage there too.
The incinerator burned thousands of tons of waste a day when it was in operation. It was torn down in 2005.
Currently, the area is used for family recreation with playgrounds full of kids daily.
Colton plans to file papers in state Supreme Court seeking a court order to block construction of the trash station site.