Rich Howells

NEPA SCENE PODCAST: Fighting the Keystone Sanitary Landfill expansion with Friends of Lackawanna

NEPA SCENE PODCAST: Fighting the Keystone Sanitary Landfill expansion with Friends of Lackawanna
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Professionally recorded on Mondays at The Stude in TwentyFiveEight Studios in Scranton and released exclusively on on Tuesdays, the NEPA Scene Podcast is a free supplement to the website, expanding on the arts and entertainment stories covered on the site and going beyond them to discuss other news and entertainment topics.

Each week, the unedited and uncensored podcast features Rich Howells, NEPA Scene founder and editor, and Mark Dennebaum, president and owner of TwentyFiveEight Studios. Every episode streams on iTunes, SoundCloud, Stitcher, and

In Episode 52, we sit down with Michele Dempsey and Pat Clark of Friends of Lackawanna, a local nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting the health and safety of the community through environmental activism, to talk about the proposed 50-year expansion of the Keystone Sanitary Landfill in Dunmore and Throop and why it must be stopped.

We discuss the facts, numbers, and staggering statistics (including the fact that it takes in 7,200 tons of waste per day and only 36 percent of this trash is from Pennsylvania); the effect it has already had on local residents and businesses and the health issues and economic damage it will cause over time; leachate seeping into the groundwater and the dangerous fracking materials contained within; the close proximity of the Dunmore Reservoir; the Department of Environmental Protection and its lack of health data; the Scranton Sewer Authority and untreated leachate; the foul stench that has caused evacuations; comparisons to the Flint, Michigan water crisis and the Love Canal disaster; conflicts of interest and corruption; the active role of some local media and the silence of others; why people are afraid to speak out about this issue; getting notable politicians to join the cause; how FoL has grown from just a few people to packed public events; ways the public can get involved; and what the future may hold.

To learn more, visit or the group’s Facebook page. See several ways to take action here and donate to the cause anonymously here.

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Photo by Mark Dennebaum/TwentyFiveEight Studios