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DC DPW FOIA

Energy Justice & Sierra Club FOIA Request to DC Department of Public Works (1/3/2014)

Response Letter (2/11/2014) and full raw FOIA response (58 MB zip file)

  1. "All documents and memoranda since 1/1/2011 related to the Waste Life-cycle Study under the Sustainable DC Plan, including:
    1. The final Request for Proposal (RFP) [Solicitation Doc 97300];

    2. Bids submitted;

    3. Bid evaluation criteria and documents related to analysis of bids;
      • [None provided]

    4. Contract awarded to winning bidder;

    5. Timeline for completion of study;

    6. Documents related to plans for public hearings;
      • [None provided]

    7. Correspondence related to the study"
  2. "All documents, proposals and memoranda authored by, or addressed to, management, staff or consultants of the Department of Public Works allowing for any possibility of a waste-to-energy facility (broadly defined to include any thermal treatment) within the District as part of the 'Waste Life-cycle Study'."
    • [Some answered in 1(g) above. No other documents provided.]

  3. "All RFPs, bids, bid evaluation documents and contracts from the most recent contract bidding for each type of waste that the District of Columbia contracts with vendors for hauling and disposal." It is our intent to obtain the contracts for hauling and disposal for each type of waste handled by the city including but not limited to municipal solid waste, recycling, composting, e-waste, hazardous waste, and construction and demolition waste.

  4. "All communications since January 1, 2013 between DPW and employees or representatives of Prince George's County or other political jurisdictions considered as potential partners in a regional waste-to-energy facility regarding coordination on regional waste disposal, particularly those relating to studying the possibility of locating a waste-to-energy facility in the District."
    • [None provided]

  5. "All communications between DPW and employees or representatives of waste-to-energy vendors, including Covanta, since January 1, 2013."

  6. "All communications between DPW and employees or representatives of the Northeast Maryland Waste Disposal Authority since January 1, 2013."

  7. All communications between DPW and the DC Mayor's office regarding waste-to-energy since January 1, 2013."
    • [Documents we know exist were not provided]

  8. "All communications between DPW and members of DC City Council regarding waste-to-energy since January 1, 2013."

  9. "All records from Fiscal Year 2008 (FY08) to Fiscal Year 2013 (FY13) containing statistics, graphs and databases on the volume and types of municipal solid waste transported to the Ft. Totten transfer station and destination after processing."
  10. "All records from FY08 and FY13 containing statistics, graphs and databases of the volume and types of municipal solid waste transported to the Benning Road transfer station and destination after processing."
  11. "All records from FY08 to FY13 containing statistics, graphs and databases of the volume and types of municipal solid waste transported from District of Columbia waste transfer stations to the Covanta Fairfax Energy-from-Waste facility (Covanta Fairfax Facility)."
  12. "All records from the FY08 to FY13 containing statistics, graphs and databases of the municipal solid waste transported from District of Columbia waste transfer stations to disposal facilities other than the Covanta Fairfax Energy-from-Waste facility (Covanta Fairfax Facility)."
    • [For Fiscal Years 2008-2009, responsive documents to items 9-12 state: "No data available. Scale system was switched to a new system and data migration is inaccurate and incomplete."]

      2010-2013 data was supplied in numerous spreadsheets broken out by year and inbound/outbound for each of the four categories above. We've compiled all but one of these into a single Excel workbook, added several summary charts and a "Facilities" tab correcting vague and misspelled facility names and explaining what we know about each facility referenced.

      Transfer Station Data (2010-2013)

      FY 2009 Combustible Tons

  13. "List of all private licensed haulers who are allowed to take waste from commercial and multi-tenant housing of four or more units in the city."
    • [DPW claims to have no responsive documents and suggests that the Department of Consumer Regulatory Affairs ("DCRA"), Department of the Environment ("DDOE"), or the Office of Planning ("DCOP") may have responsive documents.]

  14. "All records containing lists of disposal facilities that private haulers of commercial and multi-tenant housing of four or more units are allowed to use or have used in FY12."
    • [DPW claims to have no responsive documents and suggests that the Department of Consumer Regulatory Affairs ("DCRA"), Department of the Environment ("DDOE"), or the Office of Planning ("DCOP") may have responsive documents.]

  15. "The study referenced by Hallie Clemm at the January 3rd 2013 DC Environmental Network panel, demonstrating that the maximum possible recycling rate for D.C. is around 35 percent." She references the study at 4:00-4:30 in this video documentation of her talk on the panel: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8rms_iaSBDU"

  16. "Any documents that contain figures or data that support statements made by Hallie Clemm and/or William Howland that incineration is less expensive than coal for energy production."
    • [None provided]

  17. "Any documents that contain figures or data that support statements made by Hallie Clemm and/or William Howland that incineration is less expensive than landfills for waste disposal."
    • [None provided]

  18. "Any documents that contain figures or data that support statements made by Hallie Clemm and/or William Howland that incineration is less polluting than coal for energy production."
  19. "Any documents that contain figures or data that support statements made by Hallie Clemm and/or William Howland that incineration is less polluting than landfills for waste disposal."
    • GBB White Paper Excerpts

      [Note: GBB is the nation's leading pro-incinerator consulting outfit, and their white paper includes false comparisons designed to make incineration look good, such as comparing mercury emissions to coal power plants without adjusting for the size of facilities, making incinerators look like they went from being a larger total source than coal (true) to a much smaller source once the incinerators installed pollution controls, without acknowledging that incinerators are still 6-14 times worse than coal per unit of energy produced.]

  20. "Any documents that contain figures or data that document the figure in the Sustainable DC Plan showing that DC generates 800,000 tons/year of waste."
    • [No specific documents provided, but Technical Memos supplied in email attachments under item 1(g) above show that the city generates about 900,000 tons/year.]

  21. "Any documents and correspondences related to the Waste Action Plan proposed under the Sustainable DC Plan, including timeline for development and opportunities for public consultation and participation."
    • [DPW claims to have no responsive documents and suggests that the Department of Consumer Regulatory Affairs ("DCRA"), Department of the Environment ("DDOE"), or the Office of Planning ("DCOP") may have responsive documents.]

  22. Any documents and correspondences related to status of the compost site pilot projects initiated as part of the Sustainable DC Plan."
    • [DPW claims to have no responsive documents and suggests that the Department of Consumer Regulatory Affairs ("DCRA"), Department of the Environment ("DDOE"), or the Office of Planning ("DCOP") may have responsive documents.]



Energy Justice FOIA Request to DC Department of Public Works (4/20/2013)

Privilege Log (list of what they redacted and why)

  1. "All documents and memoranda since 1/1/2011 relating to DPW's timeline for issuing a Request for Proposals to study waste-to-energy."
    • "The Department has no responsive documents."
    • NOTE: they're playing games, pretending that the RPF isn't "to study waste-to-energy." However, the Final Solicitation is on their website. It was published on the city's website on 2/28/2013 and bids were due by 4/4/2013. To get to it directly, click here then click on "Electronic Opportunities." Click on the arrow beside – Status: Pending Selection, then click the "ID" column label twice to sort from high to low numbers. ID Number for the solicitation is Doc97300 ("Request For Proposals - Solid Waste Management or Engineering Consulting Services"). Click that, then click "Download Content" to get all of the documents.
  2. "All documents relating to DPW's Request for Proposals to study waste-to-energy."
    • "The Department has no responsive documents." (same games as above)
  3. "All active contracts between the Covanta Fairfax Facility and the District of Columbia."
  4. "All bids and bid evaluation documents from the most recent contract bidding for the District of Columbia's municipal solid waste disposal."
  5. "All communications between DPW and employees or representatives of Prince George's County or other political jurisdictions considered as potential partners in a regional waste-to-energy facility since 1/1/2009 regarding coordination on regional waste disposal, particularly those relating to studying the possibility of locating a waste-to-energy facility in the District."
  6. "All communications between DPW and employees or representatives of waste-to-energy vendors, including Covanta, since 1/1/2009."
  7. "All communications between DPW and employees or representatives of the Northeast Maryland Waste Disposal Authority since 1/1/2009."
  8. "All communications between DPW and the DC Mayor's office regarding waste-to-energy."
  9. "All communications between DPW and members of DC City Council regarding waste-to-energy."
  10. "The study identifying the Benning Road, Fort Totten and Blue Plains sites as the most suited sites in the city for a transfer station."