February 22, 2010
My Husband and I have built our dream home in New Tripoli, PA. We started about 3 years ago. We have built it ourselves along with family and friends. So you can imagine the money, time and effort that has gone into this. I remember the first day I experienced the sludge. We arrived at our new home, got out of the car and almost gagged! As my eyes burned and I was gasping for air, my husband walked over to the field that butts up to our property line. There it was, SLUDGE! I was beyond disgusted. Not only am I concerned about our health, but we can't even enjoy being outside!
I have called DEP, I have spoken to the company that dumps this horrible stuff . . . my hands are basically tied and I get no where! The Man at Synagro (the company that produces this stuff) told me "welcome to country living"! Well I hated to tell him that I have lived in the country my entire life and this is not COUNTRY LIVING! Then he basically told me that it was my own waste?! NO, I DON"T THINK SO! I am not an idiot . . . I don't have public water or sewage, and when I researched it most of this stuff comes from cities like Philadelphia and Baltimore. The field is only 80 feet from my well. I am certain that this stuff is in my water. I have had it tested and it comes out ok to drink but they do not test for the metals that have been known to cause cancer. My neighbor gets horrible rashes when they spread it and it has basically ruined our nice neighborhood. No one can go outside when this is dumped. To top it all off for our family, we live on and own a Christmas Tree Farm. When this is dumped near Tree season I feel so bad for our customers that are trying to cut down their tree. It just ruins the experience. For those that haven't experienced this you are lucky, I can only describe the smell as a dirty port-o-john on the hottest summer day. I would do anything to get rid of this.
I realize the farmers are getting this for free along with some government benefits that makes it hard to say no to. I just can't see why this can't be used where there are no homes or neighborhoods . . . or if it needs to be used at all. This is not farming or healthy.
Juliann Masenheimer, New Tripoli PA