Letter to the SJC from one of our group member, remember to join us for the May 6th decision making meeting.
Honorable Members of the San Jose City Planning Commission,
I am writing to request your consideration to reopen public hearing on May 6th as there are many material facts and changes that have occurred since February meeting.
“Stop Newby Island Landfill Expansion” petition has now exceeded 22,000 signatories including over 5500 San Jose residents. If a full public hearing is not feasible, kindly allocate a 20 minutes block for Citizen Grassroot Movement representatives to present new data.
Please take a look at our group’s fact sheet that debunks “8 Myths” from Republic Services:
Pg67 – “The Emissions Report takes this odor flux data and calculates the odor emission (DT/minute) by multiplying the representative odor flux by the surface area of the source (m2) to determine the odor emission rate.”
Let me explain why the above methodology is fundamentally flawed in 3 simple charts below:
If we use Schmidt-Card’s calculations, the Pacific Ocean will appear to be 10 million times stinkier than the Bay, or that the clean air in our home is 190x stinkier than a kitchen trashcan.
Once normalized, we can now fairly compare odor concentration. Sure enough, the NIRRP Working Face (or active landfill) has an average odor flux of 59 DT/min-m2. That is by far the stinkiest source, >10X worse than the Bay. DT=7 is typically employed as detection threshold for odor regulatory enforcement.
Please note that the normalized odor flux chart jives with BAAQMD odor complaint database. With 2300+ complaints recorded in the past 3 years, BAAQMD inspectors have successfully traced 94% of confirmed complaints to Newby Island, and only 6% from other area odor generators including ZWED and Water Pollution Control Plant. There has been no confirmed complaints traced to the Bay, except one by Dumbarton Bridge more than 10 miles from the impacted region. BAAQMD Director of Compliance and Enforcement affirmed these findings at Milpitas Community Meeting on April 23, 2015. We have video recordings of the BAAQMD meetings and data published in our group website: http://milpitas-odor.info
I hope it is now clear to you how Republic Services and Schmidt-Card skewed their charts to conceal high landfill odor concentration. Schmidt-Card’s so-called scientific reasoning and conclusion of the bay being the largest regional odor source is nothing more than an act of public deception. This odor study is just one of many fallacies Republic Services continue to present to you, various agencies and the public.
If you review the 2012 certified EIR, you will note that Republic Services had persistently claimed no change to the 2025 closure plan with or without the expansion in all their communications between 2007-2012. Residents found out for the very first time in November 2014 that Republic Services has every intention to operate beyond 2025 and indefinitely as long as capacity remains. “Fool me once, shame on you; Fool me twice, shame on me.”
With 6 Public Nuisance Violations in the past 6 months, and thousands of odor complaints that span decades, City of Milpitas has adopted a resolution that Newby Island is a Public Nuisance on April 21’2015. The number of odor complaints in the most recent 12 months is 80X higher the average odor complaint per year recorded during the EIR study period. I hope you reckon the adverse impacts on the hundred thousands of people who live and work in the vicinity of the landfill.
There are better alternatives available through waste diversion programs and effective utilization of the millions of tons of excess capacity in the 5 existing landfills within San Jose City, and projected by CalRecycle to last for many decades. Hence, a permit that grants an unprecedented bayfront landfill expansion in one of the most populous, environmentally sensitive region, within the main corridor of Silicon Valley corporate offices, in an era when bay area cities are committed to zero-waste initiatives and shoreline restoration is simple irresponsible.
San Jose Municipal Code Section 20.10.120 states that the purpose of zoning is “to promote and protect the public peace, health, safety, and general welfare”
San Jose Municipal Code Section 20.100.940 states that a PD permit can only be issued if the environmental impacts of the project, including, but not limited to noise, vibration, dust, drainage, erosion, storm water runoff, and odor which, even if insignificant for purposes of the CEQA, will not have an unacceptable negative effect on adjacent property or properties“.
California Code of Regulations Sections 15162, 15163, 15164 also states that the lead agency has the right to prepare subsequent, supplement, or addendum to a certified EIR on the basis of substantial evidence.
You have the power to stop the landfill expansion! Please uphold the spirit and letter of aforementioned California and San Jose City regulations to protect the public by denying the Newby Island Landfill Expansion Permit on May 6th 2015, and request the preparation of additional EIR on project alternatives.
8 years Milpitas Resident
This site contains information on odor issues in Milpitas.