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Monday, September 21, 2015

Comment period extended for planned toxic waste plant expansion

Posted By on Mon, Sep 21, 2015 at 2:18 PM

We reported before that US Ecology, a hazardous waste facility on Detroit’s east side, wanted to enlarge its operation. We noted that “the company, headquartered in Boise, Idaho, is seeking to build new tanks and storage buildings at the Detroit plant.”

What we didn’t know at the time was that the facility, located on Georgia Street off Mount Elliott, wanted to expand its operations tenfold.

We only learned that from a very good story in the Detroit Free Press, which reported that the facility’s new license would “allow it to increase hazardous waste storage there in tanks and containers from 64,000 gallons to nearly 666,000 gallons.”

As we noted before, the facility is a half-mile from the densest urban area in Michigan: Hamtramck. It’s also located less than a mile from several churches and mosques, about a quarter mile from the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department, and less than 1,500 feet from Crockett High School. Also, the additional waste would stream into the plant via local roads and highways; an accident could end up being a costly hazmat situation.

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality had extended its public comment period until Sept. 12, but an outpouring of public comment has prompted the department to extend the comment period until Oct. 12. To submit a public comment, residents may contact Richard A. Conforti at or by phone at 517-284-6558. More information on US Ecology’s request can be found here.

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