Award-Winning Landfill Closure Using Alternative Materials

  • Onsite mine spoils are used as an inexpensive alternative cap material.
  • Grundy County Landfill following cost-effective, innovative closure.

EnSafe was the prime contractor in a successful effort to cost-effectively close a sanitary landfill in financially strapped Grundy County, Tennessee. Closing the landfill by conventional methods would have cost $1.4 million, likely forcing the county into financial insolvency due to its limited tax base and debt rating.

EnSafe designed a multiphased approach to remedy site deficiencies and close the landfill to state standards. Noting that the site had abundant heavily weathered shale that was friable and compactible, EnSafe developed a plan to use it as an alternative capping material. EnSafe approached the state with a request to utilize the available and abundant mining spoils in and around the landfill as an alternate material for cap construction.

Overall, EnSafe achieved compliance with the Agreed Order developed between the county and state regulators, closed the landfill in a manner that protected human health and the environment, and stayed within the limited budget available for implementing the selected technical remedy.

EnSafe proved that plentiful mine spoils at the site could be used as an innovative, cost-effective capping material, thereby saving the county nearly $900,000 with a total cost of $485,000.

This innovation won the 2002 Grand Iris Award in the American Council of Engineering Companies of Tennessee's Engineering Excellence competition.

Services Provided

  • Design and construction oversight of a retrofitted perimeter leachate collection system
  • Upgrade of the facility's groundwater monitoring system
  • Modification of the landfill closure plan
  • Regulatory negotiation
  • Civil, environmental, and geotechnical engineering design and testing