Ohio EPA Proposes Stricter Regulation of C&D Landfills, Especially Leachate

Date: December 27, 2011

Source: OhioEPA

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (OhioEPA) is proposing new rules that would for the first-time, require operators of construction and demolition debris (C&D) landfills to monitor landfill liquids, known as leachate. Such landfills previously have been exempt from leachate monitoring requirements, as is the case in most other states. OhioEPA says that the proposed rule changes were informed by a recent study that concluded that groundwater could be threatened by leachate from C&D landfills and a 2005 directive from the state's General Assembly that required OhioEPA to revise its regulations of C&D landfills. The proposed rule is expected to affect 55 C&D landfills across the state. Municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills, most of which also accept C&D materials, are already required to monitor as well as manage their leachate. The proposed rule would also modify post-closure care and financial assurances. The post-closure care period could be extended if a problem were found.

December 22, 2011

Ohio EPA Proposes Rules for Existing Construction and Demolition Debris Landfills

Ohio EPA is updating rules to regulate existing licensed construction and demolition debris landfills and will hold a public hearing on the proposed rules on Tuesday, Jan. 3, 2012.

The public hearing will begin at 10:30 a.m. in the 6th floor Conference Center, Room B, Ohio EPA, 50 West Town Street, Suite 700, Columbus. At the meeting, Ohio EPA will accept public comments pertaining to the proposed rules. The public hearing will end when everyone has had an opportunity to testify. Visitors to the building must present a photo I.D.

In 2005, the Ohio General Assembly required Ohio EPA to revise its construction and demolition debris landfill disposal regulations to meet specified criteria under Ohio law. Ohio EPA conducted a leachate study and found that leachate from Ohio construction and demolition debris landfills poses a threat to public health and the environment if released to ground water or surface water. Based on those results, the legislative mandate, and public comments received on the draft rules issued earlier this year, Ohio EPA developed the current proposed rules.

The amended proposed rules focus on five key areas:

  • Five-year post-closure care period;

  • Post-closure care financial assurance provided by the facility;

  • Extension of post-closure care period if there are health or environmental impacts;

  • A procedure to adjust final closure financial assurance with the issuance of an annual license; and

  • Monitor landfill leachate at the bottom of the landfill for an established list of contaminants, and if detected, monitor ground water for the detected contaminant.

In response to public comments received, several changes have been made that would:

  • Allow applicants to apply for certification to install ground water monitoring wells along with required reports;

  • Not require financial assurance documentation to be submitted at the same time as the license application;

  • Allow five years to fully fund increased closure and post-closure care financial assurance costs;

  • Allow delay of funding for financial assurance for the portion of the landfill that is unconstructed (until completed);

  • Allow the costs of annual leachate samples at all facility collection points to be managed over three years; and

  • Clarify that only leachate collection points using recirculated leachate would need to be sampled quarterly.

Written comments may be mailed or emailed to Michelle Braun (michelle.braun@epa.state.oh.us), Division of Materials and Waste Management, P.O. Box 1049, Columbus, Ohio 43216-1049. Written comments also may be submitted to the hearing officer at the public hearing. All testimony received by the close of business on Jan. 3, 2012, will be considered by Ohio EPA before a final action is taken.

Copies of the proposed rule changes are available online (www.epa.ohio.gov/dsiwm), or by contacting the Division of Materials and Waste Management at (614) 644-2621. In addition, full copies of all proposed rules are available for review at any Ohio EPA district office and at Ohio EPA's Central Office.

For more information, contact:
Linda Fee Oros, (614) 644-2160 or
Mary McCarron, (614) 644-2160.

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