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SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT American Bar Association Forum on the Construction Industry American Bar Association Forum on the Construction Industry Presented.

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Presentation on theme: "SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT American Bar Association Forum on the Construction Industry American Bar Association Forum on the Construction Industry Presented."— Presentation transcript:

1 SOLID WASTE MANAGEMENT American Bar Association Forum on the Construction Industry American Bar Association Forum on the Construction Industry Presented By: Robert B. Gardner, PE, BCEE SCS Engineers (San Francisco Presentation) Bruce J. Clark, PE, BCEE SCS Engineers (Atlanta Presentation) Prepared By: Vincent Martinez VITAL Consulting Group Infrastructure Civil Works Projects for Lawyers

2 Solid Waste Management Involves: ▪Collection ▪Processing ▪Recovery ▪Disposal

3 Solid Waste Regulation ▪1965 Solid Waste Disposal Act ▪1976 Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA)

4 Waste Management Hierarchy (U.S. EPA) 4 Source Reduction Reuse Recycling and Composting Resource Recovery Incineration Disposal Most Preferred Least Preferred

5 Solid Waste Characterization ▪In 2010 –250 million tons of waste was generated in the U.S. (approximately 4-1/2 pounds of waste generated daily per person) –88 million tons of waste was recycled or composted –Approximately 29 millions tons of solid waste was combusted for energy recovery.

6 Solid Waste Collection and Transfer Residential Collection: Primarily single family residential properties Commercial Collection: Businesses Multifamily Complexes Industrial Facilities Schools Government Complexes Hospitals Construction Sites

7 Solid Waste Collection and Transfer Transfer Stations: Collection trucks transfer their loads to large trailers to reduce the distance and number of vehicles to the disposal facility. Material Recovery : Manual and mechanized sorting and packaging of recyclable materials (i.e., glass, plastic, paper, metals)

8 Solid Waste Management Approaches The general purpose of solid waste plans is to achieve environmentally sound management and disposal of solid and hazardous waste, resource conservation, and maximum utilization of valuable resources Solid Waste Management Plans:

9 Solid Waste Management Approaches Recycling: Residential: Recyclables include: glass bottles plastic bottles aluminum cans/foil tin and bimetal cans newspaper cardboard paper Some communities have implemented programs rewarding residents for recycling. A few communities, mostly California, provide curbside collection of separated organics – i.e. food waste.

10 Solid Waste Management Approaches Recycling: Commercial and Institutional come from: Businesses and offices Shopping centers Government buildings Schools & colleges Hospitals Retirement homes Restaurants Other sources

11 Solid Waste Management Approaches Recycling: Industrial: Industrial sources typically generate recyclables such as: Beverage bottles and cans Corrugated cardboard Paper from office areas and break rooms Many industrial processes reuse scraps or surpluses as part of their operations.

12 Solid Waste Management Approaches Recycling: E-Waste: E-waste is growing rapidly; Technical obsolescence and lower production costs Computer monitors and older television picture tubes contain an average of 4 pounds of lead that needs to be disposed of. Besides lead, E- waste can contain: Six other heavy metals Flameretardants

13 Solid Waste Management Approaches Recycling: Separate Organics Management (SOM): Gaining interest in the U.S. Organic diversion involves segregating and collecting organic waste found in the MSW stream and processing the waste for beneficial use. Target streams include: Yard waste Food waste from schools and restaurants Source separated organics from homes.

14 Waste to Energy and Conversion Technology ▪Thermal (combustion-based) Mass Burn Modular Combustion Refuse-Derived Fuel (RDF) Fluidized Bed


16 Waste to Energy and Conversion Technology Byproducts of the Combustion Process: Fly Ash: Consists of various contaminants picked up and removed from the combustion gases Bottom Ash: The non-combusted waste residue that consists of metals, glass, and other nonorganic materials.

17 Waste to Energy and Conversion Technology Nearly 100 mass burn facilities in the U.S. Waste is combusted through heat and agitation Waste byproducts include fly ash and bottom ash Metal recovery. Produce electric power, heat and hot water Plant Capacity typically > 500 tons per day (TPD) to more than 3,000 TPD Mass Burn:

18 Waste to Energy and Conversion Technology Emerging waste technologies seek to maximize conversion of waste materials into energy and useful products with reduced air emission, and less unused by-products. Emerging Waste Conversion Technologies: Thermo-Chemical - Gasification - Pyrolysis Bio-Chemical - Anaerobic Digestion Integrated - Fermentation of syngas Simplified Classification

19 Waste to Energy and Conversion Technology Integrated : The process starts with gasifying an organic feedstock, then uses various fermenting enzymes or catalyst substrates to produce ethanol. This process is amenable to breaking down plant- based cellulose materials such as agricultural residue, forest material, and waste paper. First commercial waste (biomass) to ethanol plant in FL 2012 Emerging Waste Conversion Technologies:

20 Waste to Energy and Conversion Technology Thermo-chemical (Gasification): Is the process that uses heat, pressure, and steam with small amounts of air to convert organic materials into syngas. The syngas is then either combusted to provide power or converted into other energy products. Some by-products may be generated ; char (a coal-like high carbon material). Emerging Waste Conversion Technologies:

21 Waste to Energy and Conversion Technology Bio-Chemical (Anaerobic Digestion): Is a biological process that breaks down organic material in the absence of oxygen and produces biogas and residual solids as by-products. The biogas is composed of methane and carbon dioxide and is typically combusted for power. Feedstock preferably source-separated organic waste. First commercial unit Univ. of Wisconsin 2011. Emerging Waste Conversion Technologies:

22 Landfills


24 Regulated by Federal, State and Local authorities. Federal regulatory standards include: Location Restrictions Composite Liner Requirements Leachate Collection and Removal Systems Operating Practices Groundwater Monitoring Requirements Closure and Post-closure Care Requirements Corrective Action Provisions Financial Assurance Provisions

25 Landfills Siting a new landfill is a complex, costly and controversial endeavor that involves detailed environmental investigations, engineering design, regulatory review and public involvement. State & Federal regulations and local zoning rules provide the basic requirements for siting a new landfill, including prohibitions or constraints, geologic conditions, and setbacks (environmental and airports, etc. Site Selection / Siting:

26 Landfills MSW landfills typically require local, state and federal approvals for permitting. States have the authority to regulate and permit MSW facilities. State permits required include construction and operations permits. Federal approvals are sometimes required for wetlands, air traffic and air quality permitting. Local permits include land-use zoning, conditional use permits, site development and building permits. Permitting:

27 Landfills Bottom liners Leachate collection & treatment systems Daily, intermediate & final cover systems Storm drainage controls Landfill gas control & utilization Environmental Controls and Design Considerations

28 Landfills Environmental controls: Bottom liners - Federal standard requires composite bottom liners and a leachate collection system to collect leachate. Leachate collection & treatment systems - The purpose of a leachate collection system is to collect and convey leachate off the bottom liner so liquids do not build up, and provide suitable treatment for discharge. Environmental Controls and Design Considerations

29 Composite Liner drainage and protective layer (1 to 2 feet) filter fabric or graded stone leachate collection layer flexible membrane liner clay, thickness varies (typical thickness, 2 feet leachate collection pipes

30 Double Liner drainage and load layer flexible membrane liners sub-base optional clay or geo- composite secondary leak detection leachate collection layers leachate collection pipes

31 Landfills Environmental controls: Daily, intermediate & final cover systems: The purpose of the cover system is to minimize infiltration and erosion, the cover must also be designed to support the intended end use. Storm drainage controls: Landfills required to provide storm water run-on and run off controls through engineered storm water management systems. Environmental Controls and Design Considerations

32 Landfills Environmental controls: Landfill Gas Control: Landfill gas contains methane, carbon dioxide and trace compounds. Active and passive control systems. Landfill gases used for beneficial purposes as fuel or for electricity generation. Environmental Controls and Design Considerations

33 Final Cover

34 Landfills Scalehouse Active Disposal Areas Odor Control Waste Placement & Compaction Cover Placement Litter Control Landfill Operations

35 Landfills Equipment: Landfill Compactors Bulldozers Dump Trucks Track Hoes Scrapers Water & Fuel Trucks Landfill Operations Personnel: Landfill Manager Landfill Supervisor Equipment Operators & Mechanics Scalehouse Operators Environmental Compliance Spotters

36 Landfills Landfills required to have written closure plans that describe the steps to close the landfill with the required cover and other closure design requirements. Closure: Post-closure care period is the time after the official closure that an owner or operator must maintain and monitor the closed facility. Minimum care period – 30 yrs. Post-closure Care

37 Landfill - Redevelopment :


39 Landfills Objective of assurances is to guarantee the funds necessary to meet the costs of closure, postclosure care and corrective action when needed. Financial Assurances Options: Trust Fund Surety Payment Performance bonds Letter of Credit Insurance Corporate Financial Test Local Gov’t Financial Test Corporate Guarantee Local Gov’t. Guarantee State-Approved Mechanism State Assumption of Responsibility

40 “Top 5” Litigious Topics ▪Facility Siting & Permitting ▪Waste Flow Control ▪Personal Injury ▪Environmental Impacts (i.e, odors, groundwater pollution, etc.) ▪Facility Construction-related claim

41 Flow Control ▪Flow control is a regulatory tool used by local governments to require all solid waste be directed to a specific disposal facility. ▪Often necessary for the development of large municipal waste disposal facilities ▪Various flow control ordinances have been challenged in the Supreme Court; –United Haulers Association v. Oneida-Herkimer Solid Waste Authority and, –C&A Carbone, Inc. v. Town of Clarkstown, 511 U.S. 383 (1994),

42 Thank You

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