A joint venture between a Washington, D.C., newspaper and a Baltimore waste paper processor is planning to open a paper-bundling plant in Dundalk that could handle up to 6,000 tons of old newspapers a month.
The paper-bundling operation would be located in an existing 130,000-square-foot building, formerly a boat-manufacturing site, in the 8000 block of Stansbury Road, according to plans submitted to Baltimore County environmental officials.
The old newspapers would be sorted and bundled in 2,000-pound bails, then shipped by truck or rail to recycling plants, according to Bruce W. Fleming, president of Baltimore-based Canusa Corp., a partner in the deal.
Capitol Fiber Inc., jointly owned by the Washington Post Co. and Canusa Corp., recently submitted its plans under Baltimore County's year-old waste management law.
That law calls for county scrutiny of waste storage or waste processing facilities not generally covered by state or federal law. The idea is to empower the county to consider residents' complaints about the effects of such operations on neighborhoods, things such as traffic, noise, dust and the like.
Capitol Fiber is the first firm to submit a complete application for a permit to operate under the new law, which was adopted Oct. 16, 1989, by the County Council.
Numerous existing operations that have been the subject of citizen complaints in the past -- a Granite tree farm, for instance, that residents claim has been turned into an landfill -- must also go through the permitting process, said Michael W. Kendall, a county sanitarian.
Kendall said that it appears the paper-bundling operation will have minimal impact on nearby communities. Truck traffic is to use Stansbury Road, and avoid residential side streets.
"The main thing is they won't be shredding papers there, which means no newspaper dust," Kendall said.
Before a permit can be granted, the public will have an opportunity to ask questions about the proposed operation and make comments at a hearing scheduled for Oct. 24 at 7 p.m. at Dundalk Senior High School.
According to part of its application, Capitol Fiber will be getting about 1,800 tons of old newspapers a month from Washington, D.C., officials, as part of a deal struck earlier this summer.
Since October 1989, Washington has had curbside collection of old newspapers, but was paying $35 a ton to dispose of them. Capital Fiber is removing the newspapers for $10 a ton.
Fleming said he hopes to strike similar deals with Baltimore and Baltimore County officials, as the two localities implement their recycling plans.
With recycled newsprint selling for roughly $5 a ton and processing costs about $25 a ton, Capitol stands to lose $10 a ton, even with the Washington fee of $10 a ton, said Fleming.
"It's not a profit-making enterprise at this point, collecting newspapers," he said. "Let me assure you. We're looking for the long term."