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Waste Management believes Cedar Ridge polluting stream

Monday, June 29, 2009

Waste Management Inc., the company that operates Cedar Ridge Landfill just west of Lewisburg, says its leaders believe the landfill is the source of pollution in the water and creek bed down stream from Vickrey Spring near Poteet Road.

"We received preliminary results from sampling of Vickrey Branch and, based on our initial review, we believe the source is from Cedar Ridge Landfill," Waste Management Community Relations Manager Terri Douglas said in a hand-delivered, one-page letter dated Thursday and addressed "Dear Neighbors."

"Cedar Ridge Landfill wants to share accurate information as quickly as possible regarding impacts to Vickrey Branch," Douglas wrote. "We made this initial determination based on elevated levels of ammonia, chloride, sodium and potassium, and elevated conductivity measurements."

Conductivity measurements examine water's ability to carry an electrical current. Various elements in water help the flow of electricity better than what would be conducted by pure water.

Stream samples also indicate coliform levels that exceed clean water standards. Coliform comes from feces of warmblooded animals and it's a bacterial indicator of sanitary conditions.

"At this time we are advising neighbors not to enter Vickrey Branch, south of the landfill,until otherwise advised by Cedar Ridge Landfill or the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation.

Marshall County Mayor Joe Boyd Liggett issued cautionary announcements about two weeks ago, telling area residents to stay out of the creek's water.

Waste Management's annoujncement was released on the evening of June 25. That Afternoon, TDEC issued its own statement, saying substantially the same thing as Douglas' letter to the neighbors.