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Rep. Petit and Sen. Martin Host Informational Meeting to Discuss Covanta’s Request to Burn Medical Waste

Posted on December 22, 2021


Last night, Sen. Martin and Rep. Petit held an informational meeting at the Plainville library to provide area residents with an opportunity to have their voices heard and questions answered regarding the possibility of Covanta, a local Waste-to-Energy plant, being allowed to burn medical waste at their facility.

Covanta seeks to adjust a current permit with the City of Bristol that would allow them to convert a portion (8%) of their trash-burning to medical waste.

According to Covanta, under the permit, we would process nonhazardous biomedical waste, which includes IV bags, tubes, sharps, vials, pharmaceutical residue as well as bedding, gowns and bandages, all of which is potentially infectious as a result of contact with blood or body fluids. It also includes pathological waste (i.e.: tissue samples from biopsies, organs from surgical procedures) and waste from research facilities.

Area residents remain concerned about the effects burning these types of items will have on the environment and overall air quality and submitted almost 100 questions to the company the felt required more answers. Additionally, many feel they’ve been left out in the dark throughout the process.

The company has met all of the requirements put forth by the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection and is waiting for their final determination. The alternative to Covanta burning the medical waste would be to send it out of state to be disposed of underground.

Covanta currently serves the towns of Bristol, New Britain, Plainville, Southington, along with ten others in their area.

Two additional forums are expected to take place next month in Southington and Bristol.

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