Tue, Feb 02, 2010
Observations To Confirm New Plant Is Not Attracting Birds
The FAA payroll will expand to
include a bird-counting USDA biologist when the new NY North Shore
Marine Transfer Station (MTS) opens in 2012. The new garbage
transfer station is about 2,000 ft from LGA and opponents fear it
could cause an increase in birds--and bird strikes.
These increased safety measures are the first of its kind for
any garbage facility in the United States. The plan has been agreed
to by the Department of Sanitation (NYDS) through a memorandum of
understanding with the FAA. If any increases in bird activity are
noticed by the USDA biologist, the FAA will order the MTS to be
shut down while the situation is investigated.
The FAA indicated the facility would not pose a hazard as the
garbage will arrive at the indoor facility in enclosed trucks and
depart the station sealed inside cargo containers. The only
potential concern was the building's height, which was decreased
from 110 to 100 ft.
Map showing LGA and MTS
NY Representatives Gary Ackerman and Joseph Crowley have led an
opposition movement against the transfer station for the past three
years, based on concerns about bird strikes. Although they
applauded the FAA's plan, they still have doubts as to the impact
to local bird populations.
"Just days after the one year anniversary of the 'Miracle on the
Hudson,' bird strikes remain a real threat to the neighborhoods
surrounding LaGuardia Airport as well as to millions of airline
passengers each year," said Crowley. "The FAA's bird strike
prevention plan is a positive step towards averting a future
accident, but the Department of Sanitation should take additional
steps to ensure the safety of this facility."
File Photo: birds on runway
"We hope this significant concession we secured will ensure
increased safety to the flying public and to the communities near
the airport," said Ackerman.
There was no bird mitigation plan or outcry over the older
facility that MTS will replace. It operated in the same
location off the end of LGA runway 31 for 50 years.
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