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Communities in Action
Dartmouth, MA: South Coast Alliance for a Cleaner Tomorrow organizes against toxic landfill capping plan: Permit denied by Conservation Commission
When Dartmouth residents learned that a Brockton-based company proposed to bring nearly two million tons of contaminated soil into a watershed area to “cap” an old dump in their town, they were concerned. When neighbors realized that a “cap” meant a toxic mountain 65 ft high, they called organizer Claire Miller for assistance, formed a group and began organizing, going from zero to sixty in just a few short months. “Through evening meetings and workshops, Claire has provided us with the necessary guidance and tools to plow forward with a strong action plan,” said group member Gloria Bancroft. In July, to an audience of group members wearing stop-sign red, the Conservation Commission denied a permit, much to the company’s chagrin. With the town united, municipal leaders wrote a letter to the Department of Environmental Protection to express their displeasure. Finally, in anticipation of further permit decisions, Miller coached residents as they planned to travel to Boston to hand-deliver their petitions and demonstrate the depth of their opposition to the toxic proposal.
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