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Environmental group plans rally in Montgomery over Moody landfill fire


The landfill fire near Birmingham that prompted action by the Environmental Protection Agency will be the subject of a rally today in Montgomery. The Cahaba Riverkeeper and its supporters will gather at Alabama’s Capitol this afternoon. The group’s complaint is what it calls inaction by the Alabama Department of Environmental Management. Critics of the Alabama Department of Environmental Management say the agency did too little to help with the fire. The situation may prompt legislation to change how the department known as ADEM does its job. The EPA says smoke from the Moody landfill fire has been cut by half. The EPA says smoke from the so-called Moody Fire has been reduced by half. The agency hopes to have the fire out within a month.

There has already been a call to take funds from ADEM due to what some lawmakers call inaction from the agency. Republican State Senator Shay Shelnutt, of Trussville, told the news website 1819 that he planned to draft a bill to change operations within the agency. Cahaba Riverkeeper said the landfill fire and the recent discovery of an oil dump site leak nearby had been the worst cases the group has seen.

The oil dump site is located on Blackjack Road in Moody. ADEM said it issued a notice of violation to Alabama Oil & Gas Recovery, the business that operates the landfill. The State says the former oil company left the property contaminated by not having proper tank and container systems. ADEM inspected the site last month and found multiple violations.

Pat Duggins is news director for Alabama Public Radio.
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