Solid Waste Management
And Landfill Capacity
IntroductionNonhazardous Solid Waste Management and Landfill Capacity in Illinois: 24th Annual Report (2010)
Section 4 of the Illinois Solid Waste Management Act requires the Agency to “publish a report regarding the projected disposal capacity available for solid waste in sanitary landfills. . . . Such reports shall present the data on an appropriate regional basis. . . [and] shall include an assessment of the life expectancy of each site.”
This legislative mandate explains why the main body of this report is organized by seven Illinois EPA administrative regions and why landfill capacity and life expectancy are emphasized in text and landfill specification pages in the regional sections.
State-wide Data Overview
In calendar year 2010, 43 Illinois landfills accepted more than 46.1 million gate cubic yards of solid waste, half of one percent (0.5%) more waste than was accepted during 2009. Some of these landfills were not active during the full year; and three landfills closed during the year.
Eleven (11) percent of that waste amount was accepted from 12 other states. All landfills are required to report amounts of out-of-state waste accepted. Twenty-two (22) of the 43 landfills (51 percent) accepted 5.0 million gate cubic yards of waste from other states.
Landfill capacity decreased by 5.4 percent year to year
Capacity remaining reported by 45 landfill owners and operators as of Jan. 1, 2011, declined by 5.4 percent. This total of more than 1.0 billion gate cubic yards of available capacity was down more than 60 million gate cubic yards from data reported a year earlier. Based upon waste disposed in a calendar year of 2010 and capacity remaining on Jan. 1, 2011, there are 23 years of landfill life remaining.
Banned wastes to include electronics after Jan. 1, 2012
Trucks arriving at a landfill are inspected for prohibited nonhazardous wastes and for hazardous wastes that Illinois bans from disposal in landfills, including: bulk liquids, landscape wastes, lead acid batteries, potentially infectious medical waste, used motor oil, white good components and whole tires.
Beginning January 1, 2012, computers, monitors, televisions and printers will be banned from landfill disposal. Under the new law passed in August 2011, the list of items required to be recycled is expanded to include keyboards, portable music devices, scanners, videocassette recorders, video game consoles and more will also be banned from disposal in landfills.2
Loads are weighed and details about them are recorded. They are then taken to the exposed portion of the active cell, which is known as the working face.
Inactive landfills may be allowed to “temporarily close”
Streator Area Landfill #3, Streator, had a permit application that was withdrawn from Agency review on Mar. 5, 2010 for a horizontal expansion. The operation has been temporarily closed since 2005. On Apr. 28, 2006, RCS Landfill Inc., Jerseyville, also became inactive, for business reasons and continues inactivity, but reports capacity. Saline County Landfill, Harrisburg, also ceased accepting waste on June 7, 2006. The operator declared to Illinois EPA that it was “temporarily closed,” and still is during the current year. Spoon Ridge Landfill, Fairview, has been temporarily closed since 2008.
The total number of Illinois landfill operators that reported available capacity to Illinois EPA, as of Jan. 1, 2011, was 45. This total includes the four temporarily closed landfills named above and one landfill in Greenville that became inactive for business reasons on March 31, 2010.
Permanent landfill closings affect local capacity
Two landfills reached their capacity limit and closed their gates during 2010. In Region 4, Clinton Landfill #2, Clinton, ceased accepting waste on June, 15, 2010. This site closed after the Clinton Landfill #3 opened across the street. In Region 6, Bond County Landfill, Greenville, closed on March 30, 2010. Salem Landfill, Salem, one of the few city-owned and operated landfills, closed on October 15, 2010.
All other landfills in the state were open into 2011, including the newer facilities of Atkinson Landfill, Atkinson and Clinton Landfill #3, Clinton, which opened in 2009.
Capacity is down 60 million gate cubic yards, documented on Jan. 1, 2011
In a year that brought a decline in landfill capacity of 5.4 percent, five regions reported capacity declines ranging from 1.2 to 19.5 percent. There was more than a 60 million gate cubic yard decline from year to year. However, two regions reported an increase of available capacity. Region Two’s capacity increased the most at 13.1 percent. Region Three reported an increase in capacity of 1.2 percent.
How to Check Status of Bureau of Land Permit Applications on the Internet
Permit application forms are available online.
Once the Agency receives a permit application, the Bureau of Land, Permit Section (Section), proceeds with the review. One of the databases available to everyone on the Internet is the Solid 3
Waste Unit’s web database. With this database, one can determine the status of permit applications that have been submitted.
A Solid Waste Unit web database search is designed to inform the public about applications submitted, or permits obtained from the Bureau of Land (BOL). The Section issues permits for the management of non-hazardous waste at landfills, transfer stations, compost and waste storage, treatment, processing and recovery facilities.
On the search results page, the log number is linked to a brief description of the application. The main identifiers for applications are:
1. Any part of the BOL name of the site
2. The closest city to the site or
3. The county where the facility is located
Choose search method from “Active” or “Inactive” applications:
"Active" means an application is pending for the site. "Inactive" means that there are no applications currently pending, but there may be applications for which the Section has taken final action (issued, denied or withdrawn).
Further searches may be made by city, county or site name. For more help in using this database search, contact the BOL Permit Reviewer on call at 217-524-3300.
Public versus Private Ownership and Operation of Landfills in Illinois
The City of Salem was the last municipality to both own and operate a landfill. Their Public Works Department still operates a compost site at the landfill location.
There are, however, cities that still own landfills in the state, but do not operate them. For example, in Region One, Northwestern Illinois, the City of Rochelle owns the landfill located there; and in Region Three, Peoria/Quad Cities, the City of Peoria jointly owns the Peoria City/County Landfill No. 2 landfill with the County of Peoria.
There are also counties that own and/or operate landfills. Whiteside County owns the Prairie Hill RDF in Morrison, in Northwestern Illinois (Region One). Will County owns Prairie View RDF in Joliet in the Chicago Metropolitan Area (Region Two) and Knox County located in the Peoria/Quad Cities area (Region Three) both owns and operates their own landfill; also the County of Peoria jointly owns the Peoria City/County Landfill No. 2 landfill with the City of Peoria.4
The rest of the landfills in the state are privately owned.
For more details about solid waste landfills located throughout the seven Illinois EPA administrative regions of Illinois, see the body of the document on pages R1.1 through R7.17.
The seven administrative regions are Region One: Northwestern Illinois; Region Two: Chicago Metropolitan; Region Three: Peoria/Quad Cities; Region Four: East Central Illinois; Region Five: West Central Illinois; Region Six: St. Louis Metropolitan East and Region Seven: Southern Illinois.
Click tabs to swap between content that is broken into logical sections.