Our landfills are engineered to be a safe place to put trash, meaning the groundwater and surrounding area are protected from the trash inside. Not only that, they serve another purpose of providing fuel for the energy side of our business.
Design & Construction
Each section, or cell, of a Granger landfill takes about one year to construct. This is due to the required excavation, construction of a complex liner system for protection of groundwater, and placement of a piping infrastructure used to collect landfill gas for energy and to protect air quality.
The liner contains layers of different materials to keep trash and leachate (liquid within the trash) in the landfill. The materials include clay, a geocomposite material made from bentonite (a type of clay), a flexible membrane (plastic) liner, geotextile (a material similar to felt) and sand.
Also contained within the landfill are numerous perforated, high density polyethylene (HDPE) pipes used to collect landfill gas, along with similar pipes to collect leachate for treatment.
Rules and regulations for Michigan landfills are dictated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and local host communities. Landfill owners follow stringent regulations for landfill construction and operation in order to protect the environment.
There are also rules indicating which materials are prohibited from being disposed of in the landfill, as well as from which areas of the state waste can be accepted.
View a diagram of layers of a landfill.
Landfill gas, produced when organic material decomposes in a landfill, can be used as a resource.
Michigan’s solid waste law and rules contain restrictions about certain waste being disposed of in municipal solid waste landfills.