Scrap Metal Hauled Away From City Landfill

Saturday, January 04 2014

Ron Moore uses a backhoe to clear away scrap at the landfill. /Credit: Annie Ropeik

The scrap metal pile at the Unalaska City Dump was cleared away this weekend.

It marks one of the last steps in a two-year-long project, in which about nine million pounds of scrap have been removed from the island.

“We’re just as busy as the first day," says Ron Moore of R.L. Moore Metal Recycling. "It’s just a big job cleaning up this stuff, you know. It takes a lot of time. Patience.”

Moore's company has been making trips to and from Unalaska since summer 2012, working on hauling away all the island’s junk metal. Now, they’re almost done.

On a rainy afternoon at the landfill last Friday, the last of the scrap was being piled onto a barge. Ron Moore was in a backhoe, putting the metal in dump trucks so it could be driven onto the ship.

Moore was using the backhoe to rearrange what was left of the junk into a small pile of twisted frames and rusted sheet metal. Where the ground was clear, he smoothed over gouges in the mud that the scrap had left behind.

Moore says even when they’ve got landfill looking good as new, there’ll be some other scrap piles in town to take care of. He’s not quite sure when they’ll be completely finished.

“We’ll probably be here another... I don’t know, rest of my life, it seems like," he says. "I can’t get caught up. I just got so much stuff here. I never dreamed there’d be this much stuff here. I don’t know where they find it, but it’s here.”

Moore has been shipping Unalaska’s metal to Seattle, where he says the market is good right now for steel scrap.

Moore is the first contractor who’s been able to get this job done for Unalaska. A previous company left the project incomplete in 2008.

Now, Moore is in the home stretch.

“If we tell somebody we’re gonna do something, we’re gonna do it," he says. "That’s just how strong my word is, and I ain’t gonna back down from no challenge.”

Moore’s company is based in Norfolk, Virginia. He and his family have come a long way from home. But he said they’ll miss Unalaska once they’re gone.

“I love it here. It is pretty. Most unique place I’ve been in my life," he says. "Met a lot of interesting people, I can tell you that.”

With the landfill done, he says the last scrap piles they need to clear are at OSI, Northern Mechanical and several other personal yards in town.

Helen Stanley on Wednesday, January 15 2014:

Kudos to the City Department who set this up. The benefit to our Island is immeasurable.

Get'erDone on Wednesday, January 08 2014:


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