The West KL Avenue Landfill is located in Oshtemo Township, Kalamazoo County, Michigan, about three miles west of the City of Kalamazoo. The landfill property is approximately 87 acres in size and is bordered to the south by West KL Avenue.
The site was operated as a private landfill from approximately 1950 to1960, as a township landfill from 1960 to1968, and as a county landfill (aka the "Kalamazoo County Landfill") until 1979. During its three decades of operation, the landfill accepted a mix of residential and industrial waste. The landfill was closed in 1979 and capped by Kalamazoo County in 1980.
The discovery of impacts to nearby residential wells resulted in the landfill being added to the USEPA's National Priorities List (NPL) in 1982. Site investigations in the 1980s identified volatile organic compounds, phenols, and heavy metals in groundwater and isolated impacts to soil.
Over one hundred businesses and municipalities have entered into settlement agreements to resolve their liabilities at the site. In 1992, a Consent Decree was entered into between USEPA and the KLA Group giving the Group primary responsibility for implementing the USEPA-selected remedial activities.
Following the completion of site investigations and feasibility studies, USEPA finalized the initial "Record of Decision" (ROD) in 1990. As a result of additional landfill studies, the ROD was subsequently amended in 2003 and 2005, resulting in concurrent amendments to the site's Consent Decree.
The USEPA is the lead government agency for the site and EGLE serves as the support agency. Since entering into the site Consent Decree in 1992, the KLA Group has worked cooperatively to conduct site investigation and characterization activities, complete fate and transport studies, and implement the USEPA-selected remedies.
The KLA Group
In 1992, Oshtemo Township, Kalamazoo County, the City of Kalamazoo, and The Upjohn Company created the KLA Group (named as such for KL Avenue) for the purpose of facilitating effective implementation of site remedial activities. Pfizer first became involved at the Site in 2003 when it merged with the successor to Upjohn, the Pharmacia & Upjohn Company. Pfizer has since stepped in to take a leading role in the KLA Group on behalf of The Upjohn Company.