Odor Mitigation Steps
What actions has the Solid Waste Authority of Palm Beach County taken to mitigate the potential for odors from its operations?
- In September 2014, the SWA will be closing the Compost Facility, which has been identified as the single largest source of odor on the property.
- In early 2015, the SWA will be closing the Yard Waste Processing operation, as this material will be burned to create energy at Renewable Energy Facility 2.
- For years the SWA has managed its Compost and Yard Waste operations to minimize odors. Among other actions, the Authority continuously monitors weather conditions and wind direction, and ceases compost screening and yard waste grinding when wind conditions could potentially carry the odors associated with these operations offsite.
- In recent years the Authority has consolidated its landfill operations to minimize the sources of odor. In short, the active area of the landfill has been cut in half.
- The Authority has closed more than 60 acres of landfill cells. Closure includes installation of a synthetic liner over the landfill.
- The Authority is in the process of closing the Class 3 landfill cells at the far northern end of the property. Closing the landfill prevents further water intrusion which feeds the biological activity that produces landfill gas that can result in odor.
- The Authority has constructed a robust Landfill Gas Collection System which is currently collecting gas from 216 wells, including 65 new or replacement wells installed since 2012. The Authority’s gas collection has increased 30% over the past year.
- The Authority is constructing Renewable Energy Facility 2. This $700 million facility will eliminate the landfilling of organics for decades. The decomposition of which has been the cause of landfill odor.
- In an effort to divert as much material as possible from the landfill, the Authority has sized REF 2 for future growth. Had the Authority opted for a phased approach, e.g. build a smaller facility and expand it in the future, there would have been a period of years during which organics would have been landfilled. The phased approach also would have been significantly more expensive.