Skip to main content

Natural Awakenings Lehigh Valley

Incinerator Threatens Downtown Allentown

Mar 04, 2013 12:46PM

The Allentown area is threatened by toxic air and water pollution from an incinerator the city wants to build to burn 150 tons per day of trash and sewage sludge. Allentown Residents for Clean Air (ARCA) are organizing to stop the incinerator. They’re working to collect 2,000 signatures from Allentown voters by mid-March to put a clean air ordinance on the November ballot.

Incineration turns waste into toxic air pollution and toxic ash, which would then be dumped in area landfills, making them even more toxic to groundwater than normal.  The incinerator would be located at 112 Union Street, next to the sewage treatment plant, just south of the Hamilton Street Bridge. Within two miles of the incinerator, there are 20 schools, 25 parks/playgrounds, seven public housing complexes and four hospitals.

According to the U.S. EPA, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Information Administration and the National Solid Waste Management Association, incineration is the most expensive and polluting way to make energy or to dispose of waste. Solutions like reuse, recycling and composting produce 10 times more jobs. 

For more information or to get involved, call 484-891-1247, email [email protected] or visit or

Current Digital Issue