The Sidney Sun-Telegraph - Serving proudly since 1873 as the beautiful Nebraska Panhandle's first newspaper

Landfill pursues $1M grant for new system

 

August 30, 2017

Brandon L. Summers

Solid waste is compressed on a typical day at Sidney Landfill. The city is applying for two grants to purchase a shredding system to replace the landfill's obsolete bailer. In addition to saving money on maintenance, a shredder would save fill cell space by reducing air space in the waste itself.

Sidney Landfill is pursuing two grants for $1 million to replace outmoded equipment.

The city is applying for a Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality solid waste reduction grant and a Nebraska Environment Trust waste management grant to purchase of a shredder, compactor and tarp system.

Waste delivered to the landfill is pushed onto a conveyor belt that runs the waste through a bailer, which compresses the waste into bails. The bails are moved into the landfill cell and stacked three bails high and covered with dirt.

The city's bailer, though, is considered obsolete, Dean Sterling, solid waste foreman, said, and the company that manufactured its parts is no longer in business.

"It's 25 years old. You can't get parts for it," Sterling said. "This will save us a lot of space in our cell. It will save us a couple more years on our bailer for emergency use only and it will save us a lot of room in the long run."

One person, unidentified, who lives in North Carolina, has been providing parts and repair services for the equipment.

"He's been wanting to retire for the last couple of years. It sounds like he's on his way out," Sterling said. "He's the only one who can get parts for it, so once he's gone it's over."

A new shredder system would save money and space by eliminating the need for a construction and demolition cell, which costs roughly $1.5 million, and extend the current bail fill cell's life by seven years, among other benefits.

Shredders cost about $750,000 and solid-drum compactors cost $675,000. The cost of a motorized tarp system, about $35,000, had been included in the city's 2017-18 budget.

The NDEQ grant requesting $1 million is due Tuesday. It will determine what is pursued from the NET grant, Sterling said, which is due Sept. 14.

"It just depends on how much we get, and what we get in all for the three pieces of equipment," he said. "We'll apply for what we don't get on the second one."

Matching funds of $355,000 were approved by the city council at its Aug. 21 meeting.

The landfill would not be in trouble without the funds, Sterling said.

"We can still compact," he said. "We have a D6 Cat that we compact with. It's not made for compacting, so we have to really be carefully on what we compact with it."

Shredding would be an improvement over bailing, Sterling said.

"The equipment stuff is getting old. It's less maintenance on the older equipment, and the space and money we would save on shredding compared to bailing and hauling it to the cell," he said. "We're going to save as much money as we can."

 

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