Cedar Hills Regional Landfill meeting details gas, noise changes
May 28, 2013
By Peter Clark
In a quarterly community information meeting about the Cedar Hills Regional Landfill, members of the King County Solid Waste Division told those gathered that they have taken steps to correct noise and gas issues.
About 20 people attended the meeting in the King County Library Services building April 24 for the regular meeting in which the county hoped to continue a conversation with the community.
Victor Okereke, the engineering services manager for the Solid Waste Division, discussed the changes made in the landfill to respond to odor and gas complaints.
“We have made adjustments in the ways we work,” he said. “We have done a lot of work and it is working as well as we planned.”
He told the group that new probes were installed to assist with gas extraction to ensure fumes would not leave the area.
“They help us know when gas is moving towards the boundaries,” he said. To ensure that, the landfill is instituting a study of the probes’ effectiveness, measuring how well the new system keeps noxious gas contained. “Sometime by the end of the year, we will have those answers.”
Bill Lasby, health and environmental investigator with King County Public Health, backed up the findings.
“The key comment is that no gas is getting off that site that could affect people’s homes,” he said.
Okereke also presented to the gathered crowd operational changes made to soften decibel levels from the landfill. He pointed to a map that showed multiple sound probes around the perimeter of the site. He said that the division had taken into consideration how loud its machinery could be. Through insulation and correcting operation times, he said that they have rectified the problem.
“We’re monitoring noise in key locations, and major findings in the study shows that levels did not exceed limits,” he said. “We’re going to make additional efforts.”
Additionally, they discussed ground water that flows from the south end to the north end of the landfill. Surprisingly, since the water moves through an old polluted facility before reaching the landfill, natural degradation actually improves its quality.
“It takes a good amount of time for the groundwater to move from one end of the landfill to the other.” Cedar Hills Operations Engineer Laura Belt said. “It’s better when it leaves the site, in simple terms.”
Attendees asked a number of questions regarding the future results of gas and noise studies under way, but members from the Solid Waste Division could not give specific dates when those studies would be completed.
The King County employees said they would continue to hold community meetings and listen to concerns that were raised.