Discovery of IBM waste near Erie stalls home developer

ERIE – A developer is in the process of clearing waste dumped on land near Erie by IBM in the 1960s to make it safe to build homes

The Denver Post reports that the practice of dumping the type of waste IMB was producing was legal until 1968. Developer Richard Dean, who owns the land, is working with the EPA to use geophysics to locate the drums. Waste is now being removed and disposed of properly.

Dean  had a plan to clean up the old Neuhauser Landfill and build 600 single-family homes to the south, banking that homeowners would be lured by the amazing mountain views. But when the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment required him to do an environmental assessment of the 300 acres of brownfield land, his plan became messy.

Most of the waste was the byproduct of magnetic tape produced by IBM in Boulder. It was legally dumped, burned or buried at the landfill by Sanitation Engineering, according to a 1990 assessment of the area by the Environmental Protection Agency. But the work wasn’t executed with competence. The landfill’s permit was revoked by Weld County in 1969 because of poor operating practices.