landfill history

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landfill history

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1setnahkt
Sep 24, 2008, 4:23pm

Can anyone recommend a book on what landfill design might have been like about 1950 or so?

2redtide
Sep 28, 2008, 4:24pm

anything by this dude. i found him through a national geo. of all places
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Rathje

3setnahkt
Sep 28, 2008, 5:22pm

>2 redtide: Thanks, that will probably help a lot. I will be involved in digging into a landfill that closed about 1950 - construction, not archaeology - and I want to see what's waiting down there. Probably not much after 58 years, but you never know.

4Singlegayenviro
Abr 26, 2009, 4:35pm

Design is one historical features axis; another is "content"--before the hazardous waste classification regulations of the 80s and 90s, all sorts of content was "mainstreamed" into general municiapl waste. THat's why we have (federal and, usually, state) Superfund programs--many of those sites are or were, in fact, solid waste municipal landfills (either publicly or privately owned and operated). So what you FIND, besides the fact of how it was built (c. 1950, not much more than a hole in the ground; later cells of the same facility might have included better-engineered clay layers, plasticized-materiele liners, caps with soil & revegattion etc.), will depend....

5setnahkt
Abr 26, 2009, 9:41pm

I doubt if there's a clay liner - I've got monitoring wells in it and they develop water. It's generating quite a bit of methane, which is odd because you would thnk everything that was going to decay would have done so by now. It was quite likely originally a gravel pit, based on location; but aerial photographs show it as full of water at least back to 1937. It appears to have been used as a municipal waste landfill starting about 1948, and was filled in by 1950. Miscellanous junk had come up in well cuttings; once an auger got tangled up in a box spring and it took us 8 hours to get it out of the hole; another time we probably hit an engine block or some similarly massive object.