Saturday, August 8, 2009

Landfill update from yesterday, from DEP

Crow Lane Landfill Update - August 7, 2009

1. New Ventures has committed to accelerate installation of the remaining portions of the landfill gas collection system and, along with MassDEP and Shaw, is exploring system adjustments to improve gas collection operation and efficiency.

2. MassDEP staff was at the landfill for most of the day yesterday, August 6. MassDEP participated with Shaw in sampling landfill gas from several gas extraction wells, and at the landfill gas pretreatment system and flare. The purpose of this sampling was to understand current gas conditions at the landfill and to ensure that the pretreatment system and flare are operating properly.

3. MassDEP, through Shaw, is also arranging for an inspection of the flare system by Highland Power. Highland Power designed and built the flare and previously performed a flare inspection in December 2008. The purpose of Highland’s inspection is to ensure that the flare system is operating as designed and to have Highland Power provide any recommendations concerning operation and maintenance of the flare system.

4. MassDEP staff also inspected current conditions at the landfill yesterday and accompanied Shaw through the neighborhood. MassDEP and Shaw also staff observed New Ventures staff work to address several gas breakout spots by sealing and covering them with clay and/or soil.

5. Overnight monitoring will be conducted again tonight, August 7. The purpose of the monitoring is to document the frequency and intensity of H2S and odors in the neighborhoods. This data will provide MassDEP with a better understanding of conditions in the neighborhoods and aid us in considering what additional measures might be implemented to improve the situation.

6. Ambient Air Sampling: MassDEP anticipates having Shaw conduct the ambient air sampling next Wednesday or Thursday, August 12 or 13, depending upon weather conditions. These samples will be analyzed not just for hydrogen sulfide (H2S), but for a variety of potential constituents. Our plan is to conduct this air sampling in the early morning hours at locations that have been impacted in the past.

Please send your questions, comments and suggestions to:

In addition to these email updates, correspondence and reports are posted in the MassDEP Northeast Region web site at:

A little over an hour after this update was sent out (at 8:38 p.m.), a Low St. resident reported that all the smoke detectors in his house were going off; they had opened all the windows to let the cooler air into the house.

The other day someone said to me that they were inclined to agree with the mayor that the burning smell is coming from the industrial park and not the landfill.

In the scheme of things over there - Does it matter where it's coming from, really? The point is -people are inhaling it and no one has a clue what it is.

Saying that it's coming from somewhere other than the landfill without identifying where it is coming from and what it is, is not helpful; in fact, it's criminally negligent.

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