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Nonprofit Tries To Revive Lawsuit Against N.H. Landfill Permitting

Sanborn Head

An environmental group is pushing back after a court tossed out its lawsuit alleging New Hampshire is breaking its own laws by permitting new landfill space.

The Conservation Law Foundation filed the suit in Superior Court in February, arguing that the state’s solid waste management plan is years overdue for a required update – which, under state policy, would likely focus on alternatives to landfilling.

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The suit says regulators shouldn’t let companies build or expand landfills in the state in the meantime.

The complaint seeks to effectively block one new landfill and multiple expansions that are currently in the pipeline at various permitting or appeal stages.

Earlier this month, a judge sided with the state and waste management companies in dismissing the suit. The court order says CLF should be litigating this at the state waste management council during individual landfill permitting processes.

CLF is now asking the court to reconsider. They note that the state agrees that its trash plan is expired. And they say this is a systemic issue that requires a systemic solution.

The nonprofit is separately pursuing appeals of some landfill expansions, and has sued over alleged water pollution from the Casella facility in Bethlehem.

Annie has covered the environment, energy, climate change and the Seacoast region for NHPR since 2017. She leads the newsroom's climate reporting project, By Degrees.
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