Warren thanks DEP for rifle range resolution
Warren — Representatives from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection attended the Warren Board of Selectmen's meeting Oct. 30 to give insight into the recent decision on recycling fiber material at the former rifle range.
"We met about a year ago and it is in our best interests to get this resolved," said Melanie Loyzim, director of the Bureau of Remediation and Waste Management with the DEP.
Loyzim said the DEP explored a variety of options from carpet fiber recyclers and issued a request for bids, receiving four and finally awarding the bid to Triumvirate Environmental Oct. 28.
"Of the four bids, Triumvirate was the lowest bidder. They were a no-cost bid to the state," said Loyzim.
Triumvirate is proposing to take the uncovered materials, extrude it, and produce composite lumber products.
"Of the other options that had been discussed at one time like landfilling, we admitted that was not something we wanted to do," said Loyzim.
Using the material as an alternative fuel had been looked into, but the DEP still found this to be a less than cost-effective way; especially getting it processed and hauled to a place such as Dragon Cement, said Loyzim.
Triumvirate came in with a proposal to work on site. They will put up temporary structures, and will extrude the carpet material, produce the lumber and sell it.
The three other bidders and the estimated costs were the University of Maine at Orono, $155,990; Farley & Son, Inc. of Rockport, $636,000; and S.J. Clisham, Inc. of Winterport, $1,350,000.
"We're going to get it off the site and get it recycled ... we are going to make it happen," said Loyzim.
"Fantastic!" said Selectman Michael York, with voices of support flowing after from the more than 10 attendees.
Loyzim said there will be some expenses at the site in the end such as grading, reseeding, stabilization, and some miscellaneous work.
"Is there a plan to use the stuff that has already been covered too or just the uncovered stuff?" asked Selectman Ed LaFlamme.
"Their [Triumvirate] proposal was to use the uncovered materials, but discussions have been had to use the funds that are left after their work," said Loyzim.
According to Loyzim, Dragon Cement is still planning on using the rest of the carpet material as alternative fuel, and "it sounds like their corporate people are very invested in making that happen in their Thomaston facility."
"We are very optimistic that a couple of years from now they [Dragon] will be set up to take that material," said Loyzim.
"It may be set up that the economics work best for all of us at that point," she said. "We were more concerned about getting the baled stuff out, then move on from there," said Loyzim.
York, on behalf of the selectmen, thanked Loyzim and her team for the hard work.
"This project is a prime example that protection of the environment and public safety can go hand-in-hand with job creation," said Jessamine Logan, director of Communications for the DEP, in a correspondence Oct. 31.
The proposal states the work should start in January. Contract negotiations are in process now and Loyzim said she will keep the board posted from there.
"Something you might want to consider is that as the site is cleaned up, the property value will increase," said Loyzim.
According to LaFlamme, conversations have already been started with Attorney William Kelly about property ownership.
Chairman Doug Pope noted the cleanup could take up to two years, at which time the town would consider taking ownership.
"This is a home run," said York.
Courier Publications reporter Beth A. Birmingham can be reached at 594-4401 ext. 125 or via email at email@example.com.
594-4401 ext. 125
Beth rejoined Courier Publications' news staff in February 2013. She previously worked at The Courier-Gazette from 1981 to 1990.
Her coverage area includes Warren, Union, Friendship, Waldoboro, Washington, and Thomaston and RSU40.
Beth has a passion for photography, and a degree from the University of Maine at Augusta, in affiliation with the Maine Photographic Workshop in Rockport.
Aside from photography, Beth enjoys running and walks along the waterfront, as well as other outdoor activities. She has a daughter, Claire, who is 13.