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State senator proposing legislation to combat Bordeaux landfill odors

State senator proposes legislation to combat landfill odors
Posted at 11:18 PM, Mar 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-15 09:59:47-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — In Bordeaux, residents are still smelling an issue.

“Gag on its highest days,” said long-time resident Reverend Dr. Judy Cummings. “Who’s going to buy a home, who’s going to purchase a $300,000 home in a community that’s home to a landfill?”

She said the community has been home to a landfill for decades. Currently, it's the Waste Management's Southern Services Landfill at Briley Parkway and Ashland City Highway. “When you look at where landfills are located they’re usually located in communities of color- communities of color that have no power to fight against big power brokers, big corporations,” she said.

But now someone is taking on that fight.

“Not only is it horrible to smell, I believe that it has damaged the health, as well as the economic health, of the Bordeaux residents,” said Tennessee Senator Brenda Gilmore. She plans to present a bill in the state Senate that would regulate a gas called hydrogen sulfide, believed to be emitted by the landfill.

“This particular gas generates strong odors. It smells like rotten eggs, and so for miles and miles and miles they can smell that,” said Gilmore.

The gas would join a list of others already monitored by the state.

“There are children who live here. There are seniors who live here. There are people who are your constituents who live here,” said Cummings.

While passage of the bill wouldn't solve all issues in the community, leaders say, it’s a start.

“Do what is compassionate. Do what you would want to have done for your own community,” said Cummings.

The bill will be presented during Wednesday's Energy, Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee hearing.