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The first incineration ash-cement blocks were laid in a ceremony on October 2 to inaugurate the construction of MSRC’s boathouse. The festivities included a welcome to a crowd of over 100 guests by MSRC Dean and Director J. R. Schubel and a description by the principal researcher Frank Roethel of the eight years of laboratory and field research behind the development of the durable and environmentally safe blocks.

University at Stony Brook President John H. Marburger, III and Provost Tilden G. Edelstein also addressed the gathering. In his address, President Marburger said that MSRC and its Waste Management Institute (WMI) “clearly had played a leadership role not only in the state, but also in the nation and the world in recognizing the need for enlightened means of reducing, recycling and reusing waste materials of all kinds.”

State Senators Owen Johnson, James Lack, Kenneth LaValle, and Caesar Trunzo also addressed the gathering, as well as Harold Berger, Regional Director of the NY State Department of Environmental Conservation, and Ross M. Patten, Managing Director of Wheelabrator Technologies, Inc., contributors of the incineration ash. “This building is research for the public good, and one that deals with complex societal needs here on Long Island,” said Trunzo, who has been a staunch supporter of the project and instrumental in securing state funds for the research. WMI Director R. Lawrence Swanson thanked the four senators for their strong support and affirmed WMI’s dedication to finding solutions to waste management problems. “The innovative attention to public and environmental concerns displayed in the development of these blocks are only the first of a series of such activities the Waste Management Institute expects to research,” said Swanson.

Over the next several years, the experimental building, the air in the building, and the surrounding ground will be monitored continuously by scientists for the environmental acceptability of the ash blocks, as well as their structural integrity.

MSRC thanks the following donors for their support of this project:

  • American ReF-FUEL
  • COL Properties
  • Forest Iron
  • National Solid Waste Management Association
  • Ogden Martin Systems, Inc.
  • Second District of Federated Garden Clubs of NY State
  • USA Recycling, Inc.
  • Wheelabrator Technologies, Inc.


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