The landfill is the final element of waste management with its collection, transport and recovery. In addition to the design work, AK NOVA, together with its partners (geological companies), is carrying out a comprehensive hydrological and geological study of the areas where the landfill is to be located.
Landfills until the end of the twentieth century, were, with few exceptions, independent waste disposal facilities in Poland
Nowadays, they are usually a component (storage, ballast disposal section) of a larger waste treatment and disposal facility, which are described in more detail in the section on designing waste disposal facilities.
According to the statutory definition, a landfill is a construction facility designed for the storage of waste . Landfilling is a form of waste disposal, which in turn is defined as processes of biological, physical or chemical transformation to bring waste to a state that does not pose a threat to human life and health or to the environment.
A landfill is the final element of waste management with its collection, transportation and recovery.
Legal conditions for the design, construction and subsequent operation of a landfill are contained in the Law of April 27, 2001 on waste (Journal of Laws No. 62, item 628, as amended) and implementing acts:
The mentioned legal acts do not, of course, exhaust all the legal considerations that must be taken into account when designing a landfill. Listed here are only legal acts directly related to this type of project. It is necessary to remember the regulations related to geological law, spatial planning, construction regulations, occupational health and safety, fire safety and many others.
All this makes the design a complex process, and the implementation of the so-called "sensitive" objects is one of the particularly complicated ones. In addition to design work, AK NOVA, together with its partners (geological companies), performs comprehensive hydrological and geological studies of the areas where the landfill is to be located.
Such a requirement is imposed by the Regulation of the Minister of the Environment on detailed requirements for the location, construction, operation and closure to which particular types of landfills should conform. The results of hydrological surveys and the results of geological surveys carried out in accordance with the requirements set forth in the regulations on the design of geological works, as well as the geological-engineering and hydrogeological documentation prepared in accordance with the requirements set forth in the regulations on geological-engineering and hydrogeological documentation, are an indispensable element of the application for the issuance of a decision on land development conditions for a landfill site as the first step in the investment procedure.
As part of the surveys, we perform:
In general, each landfill should be located so that it has a natural geological barrier, sealing the subsoil and sidewalls with the filtration coefficient k of the natural geological barrier for a landfill of non-hazardous and inert waste - thickness not less than 1 m, filtration coefficient k ≤ 1.0 x 10-9 m/s.
It is also important that the anticipated highest piezometric groundwater level is at least 1 m below the level of the designed excavation of the bottom of the landfill.
When it is not possible to locate a landfill on site with a natural geological barrier that meets the above requirements, an artificially constructed geological barrier with a minimum thickness of 0.5 m is used, ensuring adequate permeability. When laying it, it is necessary to take into account the settlement processes occurring on the landfill, which can cause its destruction.
A natural or artificial geological barrier can be supplemented by synthetic sealing.
AK NOVA, thanks to having its own synthetic sealing teams, has practical experience in the use of this type of material in various conditions.
This experience helps us to design landfills with an eye to the way they are constructed and implemented.
AK NOVA is not only limited to the technical side of design, but also the entire environment related to obtaining permits and administrative decisions.
According to Article 52 of the Law, the application for a landfill construction permit should additionally include:
The design of a landfill is a multi-discipline study, which consists of the knowledge and experience of many people employed and cooperating with our design office.
Every landfill is equipped with an external drainage ditch system to prevent surface and groundwater from flowing into the landfill.
Virtually every landfill is equipped with a landfill gas removal system. Landfill gas can be used for energy purposes and, thanks to leachate evaporation technology, also for its purification, and if this is not possible, it can be burned in a flare.
A landfill for biodegradable waste should also use a device for washing and disinfecting the wheels of vehicles leaving the facility.
Every landfill should be secured against unauthorized access and illegal dumping of waste. It should also weigh the weight of waste accepted at the landfill. When waste is delivered by wheeled transport, a truck scale should function at the landfill.
The landfill shall be surrounded by a green belt of trees and shrubs (at least 10 m wide) to minimize inconveniences and hazards arising at the landfill as a result of odor and dust emissions, wind dispersal of waste, noise and traffic, animal impact, aerosol formation and fires. Since the most common inconveniences are associated with the operation of a municipal landfill, for other landfills the need for a green belt, its width and location depends on the inconvenience and location of the landfill.
In addition, for the proper operation of the landfill, it should be equipped with a number of elements of technical infrastructure, monitoring system and facilities such as an administrative building, social building, warehouses, garage for equipment, boxes for raw materials, lighting, plumbing, etc.
Thanks to our cooperation with companies in the environmental sector at home and abroad, participation in industry events (environmental fairs at home and abroad, conferences and symposia), we can use the most modern solutions in our projects, backed by the opinions of operators and independent experts.
Each landfill has a certain limited volume, the achievement of which necessitates the closure of all or part of it and reclamation work.
Reclamation work must be carried out in a way that protects the landfill from its harmful effects on surface and groundwater and air, integrates the area of the landfill with the surrounding environment, and makes it possible to observe the impact of the landfill on the environment (§ 17 paragraph. 1 of the Regulation of the Minister of the Environment on detailed requirements for the location, construction, operation and closure to which particular types of landfills should conform).
The basic mistake that appears in landfill reclamation projects is "overinvestment", i.e. the adoption of solutions that expose the investor to costs unjustified by environmental protection requirements. This applies primarily to solutions related to securing (sealing) the top of the landfill.
Meanwhile, the provisions of the regulation and common logic dictate that the slopes and the surface of the landfill's crown should be cleaned up and protected from water and wind erosion by making an appropriate reclamation cover, the construction of which depends on the properties of the waste.
The minimum thickness of the reclamation cover should allow the formation and maintenance of a permanent vegetation cover (§ 17 paragraphs 4 and 5).