Modern Landfills and Environmental Responsibility: Part I

You know that today’s landfills are very different from those in your grandparents’ time. Current landfills work alongside the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to create greener solutions from ordinary waste while building economic benefits for the communities which they serve.

Are Modern Landfills Environmentally Safe? 

Before the modern landfill, waste materials were often dumped or burned in poorly chosen locations with very little thought involved. As a result, many of these older “dumps” needed significant environmental cleanups. 

Modern landfills have been carefully engineered to consider each component of its surrounding environment; from sound control and visual impact, to air quality and groundwater. Today’s landfills even work stormwater, noise, and traffic into their plans. Each environmental issue is carefully monitored and managed to ensure that the surrounding area is safe. 

These modern landfills are specifically designed to protect the environment and human health by controlling air emissions and water quality. Liners and landfill covers prevent leachate as well as methane and CO2 gas migration from the landfill.

Likewise, at the end of each day, the landfill’s waste is safely covered with either six inches of soil, a geomembrane liner like ArmorCover, or another environmentally-safe option to prevent any waste from escaping. 

How Do Landfills Address Environmental Concerns?

Modern landfills use high-tech and carefully monitored containment systems which control water and air emissions while minimizing other nuisances. Landfill employees closely monitor these facilities in order to provide quality control.

Landfills are designed, engineered, operated, monitored, and tested in a safe, environmentally responsible way. There are several federal regulations in place that restrict siting new landfills in wetlands, floodplains, or along fault lines.


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