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Safe Air for Everyone v. Meyer

ELR Citation: 34 ELR 20041
Nos. No. 02-35751, (9th Cir., 07/01/2004)

The Ninth Circuit held that grass residue remaining after harvesting Kentucky bluegrass is not solid waste under RCRA and that the Act does not prohibit growers' general practice of open burning. The court rejected a citizens group's argument that open burning is the discarding of waste. The group failed to demonstrate that there is a genuine issue of material fact as to whether the residue is solid waste. Rather, open burning provides indisputable essential benefits. Grass residue is reused to fertilize bluegrass fields, facilitates open burning, reduces the need for pesticide use by reducing insects, and increases the soil's sunlight absorption.