Thursday, October 06, 2022

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Landfill

Landfill History and Background

 

Lycoming County Resource Management Services, a Department of Lycoming County Government, operates the Lycoming County Landfill. The site is located on property owned by the Federal Bureau of Prisons approximately 9.5 miles South of Williamsport, PA on Route 15 in Brady Township which is the Host Municipality.  A total of 360.1 acres have been permitted to Lycoming County who has been developing the landfill site since 1973 and in continuous operation since June 1978.  The facility serves Lycoming County as well as Montour, Northumberland, Snyder, Columbia and Union Counties. The service area is approximately 3,000 square miles and has a population of 325,000. The Resource Management Services staff consists of approximately 70 full-time employees.

The landfill opened in June of 1978 and received 16,689 tons of MSW (municipal solid waste) in all of 1978. Our current average daily tonnage is approximately 1,100 tons/day. Our permitted daily average is 1,600 tons/day with a maximum of 2,000 tons per day.  All waste is scanned for gamma radiation prior to being weighed before accepting it for disposal.  Each load is weighed via certified scales and entered into a computerized scale program.

At the present time 95.1 acres of the 122.8 that are permitted for waste disposal are filled or in the process of being filled. This represents fields 1 through 12. Construction of Field 12 was completed in the Fall of 2020.  Fields 1, 2, and 3 have a single 20 mil PVC liner. Field 4 has a single 30 mil PVC liner while Field 5 has a 30 mil and a 50 mil PVC liner. Fields 6 - 12 have the latest design of two 100-mil HDPE liners as part of the "Liner System" that protects the groundwater. There are 26 monitoring points (wells, under drains, leachate lagoons, and detection zones) around the Landfill's perimeter that are monitored every three months; the test results are then sent to DEP.  Leachate is directed from the liner system to the Leachate Pump Building constructed between two existing lagoons associated with leachate storage and treatment.  The construction of a new 5.5 million gallon leachate tank with a double walled leachate transmission main will be available soon.  The leachate is carried in two force mains to either West Branch or Gregg Township Treatment Plants where it is properly treated.

Next to garbage, dirt and shale are the most important commodities at any landfill. We currently use crushed rock and shale to make roads for the haulers to get to the dumping areas. We also cover portions of the working face with crushed stone to enable the haulers to maneuver and discharge their loads without becoming stuck in the loose garbage. Approximately 40% of the equipment and manpower at the landfill is used to excavate, move, or process dirt and shale. Since a DEP regulation requires that no stones larger than 6" can be used in daily cover, a large crusher operation is used to process the dirt and shale. At the end of each day at least 6" of processed dirt, posi-shell which is an alternative daily cover or tarps are deployed on top of the exposed garbage to help keep the animals out and the odors in.  The current life of the remaining acreage of the landfill has been estimated to last until 2036 based on waste receipt rate equal to the permitted average daily tonnage, currently 1,600 tons per day.

The Lycoming County Resource Management Services staff is now responsible for the comprehensive County-Wide Recycling Program. This includes the Curbside Collection of clear, brown, and green glass, aluminum, and steel/tin cans in 3 municipalities, as well as the collection of clear glass, brown glass, green glass, tin cans, and aluminum from 13 drop-off sites throughout Lycoming County. Three types of plastics are collected at the 9 major sites. In the fall of 1993, we began the collection of Newsprint and Magazines at 5 sites throughout the County. Cardboard was added in 1995. We also provide recycling through drop off sites for Snyder, Union and part of Northumberland County.  Resource Management Services operates a large processing center and ships recycled products directly to the various markets to obtain the best pricing.

All aspects of Landfill operations, monitoring, and supervision are controlled by Pennsylvania's Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) from the initial design of our Landfill to a time that may be 25 to 30 years after the Landfill is officially closed and material can no longer be deposited. Act 97 Chapter 75, created DEP in 1970, to consolidate into a single state agency Pennsylvania's programs for protecting and enhancing the environment. The staff of the Lycoming County Resource Management Services agrees with DEP's mission to "ensure the wise use of Pennsylvania's natural resources; protect and restore the natural environment, and protect the public health and safety of all Pennsylvanians."

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