Over the past three decades, the KLA Group has implemented a number of significant measures to address environmental impacts and protect human health and the environment. The following is a summary of the key accomplishments to date at the site.
- In 2005 and 2006, the KLA Group added a state-of-the-art, multilayer impermeable cap system to the landfill. The cap is designed to keep the waste that is in the landfill from leaving or "leaching" out of the landfill. The landfill is fenced and the KLA Group inspects and maintains the cap on a regular basis.
- Legal restrictions have been placed in the deed records for the landfill, establishing legal mechanisms to provide that the landfill will be properly maintained in the future and that access and use will be restricted.
- An enhanced landfill gas extraction system was installed in 2007. The purpose of the extraction system is to safely manage gases generated in the landfill, including methane, helping to reduce the overall impacts from the landfill.
- The KLA Group has financed the installation of miles of water main resulting in the connection of over 440 residences to the City of Kalamazoo municipal water supply.
- Approximately 200 groundwater, potable, and irrigation wells are sampled and analyzed on a regular basis in accordance with a plan approved by USEPA.
- The KLA Group has established a "Groundwater Restricted Zone" ("GRZ") pursuant to Kalamazoo County's Sanitary Code. The GRZ is a legal mechanism that restricts the use of groundwater wells in the impacted area and a 1,000-foot downgradient buffer zone. The USEPA has endorsed the GRZ boundary. After holding public hearings, the Kalamazoo County Board of Commissioners approved the GRZ on December 1, 2015. The GRZ became effective on March 9, 2016.
- Monitored Natural Attenuation (MNA) is formally evaluated every five years, with results of the last evaluation reported in November 2020. The primary COCs remaining above Part 201 Drinking Water Criteria (DWC) in site groundwater are benzene and 1,4-diethylene dioxide (1,4-DD) (aka 1,4-Dioxane [1,4-D]).
The KLA Group performs periodic groundwater sampling to monitor site conditions. These reports are submitted to USEPA and EGLE as required under the Consent Decree.
The landfill is monitored and inspected on a periodic basis to ensure the fencing remains secure and the landfill cap continues to perform as designed.
From time to time, USEPA and EGLE request additional evaluations and activities at the site.
At the request of EGLE, the KLA group has been monitoring Per- and poly- fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in groundwater since 2019, as part of the routine groundwater monitoring. PFAS are a group of man-made chemicals that includes Perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), Perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), and many other related compounds widely used in commercial and industrial products since the 1930s.
PFOS and PFOA have been detected above the EGLE drinking water criteria of 16 and 8 nanograms per liter (aka parts per trillion) in some monitoring wells downgradient of the landfill. However, the area of PFAS in groundwater above drinking water criteria appears to be limited within the area that has already been addressed by the KLA Group by providing municipal water to all residents and prohibiting groundwater use (i.e., the GRZ). The KLA Group will continue to monitor for PFAS in Site groundwater in accordance with EGLE's Michigan PFAS Action Response Team (MPART).