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Freshkills Park, and what it can teach us

While traveling at 220 km/h in the TGV between Nancy and Paris I read about the Fresh Kills landfill and how it became a beautiful park in Staten Island. This is a continuation of my previous post, Turning a landfill into a beautiful garden.

Indeed Courrier International proposed last week the translation of the full article from The Ecologist on how what was considered as the world’s biggest landfill became “a bird-watcher’s paradise”

This article really made me think about what we can – and should – do about our planet’s landfills. As we will see, this would be a win-win-win project.

Indeed beyond the obvious social and environmental effects, the economy would benefit. Indeed, Freshkill Park is designed to gather the methane emitted by the landfill below. The project cost $250 million and is due to bring 11 to 12 million US Dollars per year worth of methane for 30 years.

Thats around $350 million of revenues from a former landfill and subsequent greenhouse gases emissions reductions at the current energy prices. But since they will soon go up again with peak energy NYC might earn much more.

Freshkill Park when it will be completed in 2016 will be 900 hectares or 2,200 acres big. This is three times Central Park.

All this is very nice and gives a great example for other cities around the world.

However I believe we should first mine the landfill to recycle what can be recycled and only then transform the remaining landfill in a park. Indeed, old newspapers can be recycled to make new magazines, metals from old appliances can be retrieved…

At a time of scarcity, the potential for large landfills must be astounding. What do you think ?

Going further :

Since The Ecologist ask you to subscribe to read their full article, I found another detailed one over at New York Magazine : Wall E Park. Enjoy !

Here is a short video MSNBC ran :

1 thought on “Freshkills Park, and what it can teach us”

  1. Pingback: Urban mining, or why mining landfills is good :: Sustainable development and much more

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