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Great Lakes Article:

Michigan ranks 3rd in garbage imports
Joel Kurth
The Detroit News

SALEM TOWNSHIP -- Michigan is expanding the mountains of trash coming into its borders at a faster rate than any other state except Pennsylvania, a new report reveals.

In 2001, at a time many other states cut rubbish imports, they grew in Michigan by 750,000 tons -- making the Great Lakes State the third most-popular destination for other people's rubbish, behind Pennsylvania and Virginia. Michigan ranked fourth last year.

More is coming.

Almost all of Toronto's garbage, 3 million tons a year and counting, should find a way into Michigan early next year, according to the Library of Congress' annual study of interstate solid waste. The city now exports much of its waste because it's near capacity at its landfill.

"It seems odd that a country the size of Canada can't find a place for its own trash," said Linda Hamilton of Salem Township, home to a landfill that accepts Canadian waste.

A perennial campaign issue, Canadian trash floods Michigan because of inexpensive rates and a Supreme Court ruling that forbids states from outlawing imports.

Michigan imported 3.6 million tons of trash in 2001. Unofficial state figures show imported trash accounted for 20 percent of the state's 19 million tons of trash in fiscal year 2002.

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