Pennsylvania DEP addresses landfill permit violations

Westmoreland Sanitary Landfill will have to pay a $24,000 civil penalty and undertake corrective actions for violating its permit and the Solid Waste Management Act.

February 18, 2020

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) announced that it has negotiated a consent order and agreement with Westmoreland Sanitary Landfill, a residual/municipal waste landfill located in Rostraver Township, Pennsylvania, to address violations of its permit and the Solid Waste Management Act.

Westmoreland Sanitary Landfill had a private service agreement with the Belle Vernon Municipal Authority to treat the landfill’s leachate at the authority’s wastewater treatment plant. The private service agreement between the landfill and authority, in place since 1994, was terminated by the authority in May 2019. The landfill was also ordered by the Court of Common Pleas of Fayette County to cease discharging landfill leachate to the treatment plant.

Since then, the landfill has been transporting its leachate via tanker truck to other treatment facilities in Pennsylvania and Ohio.

Westmoreland Sanitary Landfill’s leachate management plan approved by DEP does not authorize the landfill to transport its leachate by tanker truck to any facility and must be modified to allow interim trucking.

The agreement requires Westmoreland Sanitary Landfill to pay a $24,000 civil penalty and undertake several corrective actions, which include:

  • Minimize leachate generation by reducing the working face of the active uncovered area where precipitation permeates through the landfill waste;
  • Submit a permit modification application to authorize trucking of leachate on a temporary basis while the landfill pursues approval from DEP to install equipment to treat and evaporate leachate, and/or to use other methods to allow the landfill to cease routine trucking of leachate; and
  • Submit documentation to DEP of agreements and authorizations for the treatment facilities currently accepting its leachate along with notification if those facilities should change prior to DEP approving a modified leachate management plan.