CSX: New Leominster Waste Site To Roll 100+ Cars/Mo

New Transfer Station to Handle 1000 Tons of C&D+MSW; Key Link in "New Supply Chain" for Post-Recycling Remainders.

25 November, Leominster MA United Material Management, based in Milbury MA, has added a third solid waste handling/transfer station to its existing Milbury and Taunton facilities. The 32,500 sq ft building located between Tanzio Road and the Fitchburg Secondary line includes an indoor loading platform that can accommodate several cars at a time, and three spurs designed to load and spot up to 200 carloads per month.

According to UMM CEO Scott LeMay, the purpose of the facility is to address “a capacity imbalance in New England” for solid waste {conversation with S. LeMay, 25.Nov.2019}.

Leominster MA

UMM’s 32,500 sq ft new transfer/handling station receives remainders from the recycling processes. The facility is designed to handle 1000 tons of C&D and MSW per day, and to load up to 200 cars per month for the Midwest and beyond {United Material Management, annotated by ANRP}.

Waste space wanting

China’s 2018 ban on imported plastic waste immediately eliminated a market for about 11 million tons of U.S. waste per year. In combination with the ongoing loss of local landfills, a lot of pressure has been placed on waste companies in the region. Not too long ago, waste flowed eastward to the ports. Landfills and recycling would claim much of the volume along the way, but most of it still ended up in cargo holds that sailed off to foreign lands.

That’s no longer the case. U.S. waste still finds a welcome abroad – at much higher prices. Consequently there is more pressure to find domestic destinations, and they tend to be farther away. more of it is flowing inland. Some states are eager to relieve New England of its trash, but the rate of new land fills being opened anywhere is down. Ohio has become a favorite destination, and states further west are also open for business.

Recycling is getting real

At the same time, UMM and many companies like it have worked hard to mitigate the volume of waste they have to handle, by developing their recycling capacity. Last year, UMM recycled 36 million lbs of wood, 16 millions lbs of metals, and 34 million tons of aggregates. Still, more tons of raw waste come out at the end of the recycling process than are absorbed by it, and the pressure to move that remainder to its final destination has increased. “We try and recycle resources wherever we can,” says LeMay, and “we are getting better and better at [recycling].” But the effort adds time and expense to the turnover for a ton of waste.

The new Leominster facility is intended to right that imbalance, with its state-of-the-art handling processes and its high-capacity rail takeaway. “New supply chains get created over time,” says LeMay. Leominster is a big link in that a-borning chain, allowing UMM “to move the excess ever farther [from its origins].”