Frequently Asked Questions

Who is the KLA Group?

In 1992, Oshtemo Township, Kalamazoo County, the City of Kalamazoo, and The Upjohn Company created the KLA Group for the purpose of facilitating effective implementation of site remedial activities.

What is the current status of the West KL Avenue Landfill site?

The landfill has been capped and fenced to prevent exposures to landfill materials. A network of groundwater monitoring wells has been established to monitor the distribution and quality of groundwater. The KLA Group is providing alternative sources of drinking water in affected areas.

What are the contaminants / constituents of concern at the site?

Most of the impacts associated with the landfill have naturally degraded over time. The primary remaining constituents of concern in site groundwater are benzene and 1,4-diethylene dioxide (1,4-DD, also known as 1,4-Dioxane).

What is the status of groundwater?

Certain constituents in the landfill have leached into the groundwater and in some cases those constituents have migrated from the landfill. Approximately 90 percent of the leached constituents have naturally degraded into non-toxic compounds. A few constituents, however, have been reported as detected in groundwater above Michigan drinking water criteria. This groundwater is generally stable or the concentrations of constituents are lessening, with some localized variability, and the KLA Group continues to monitor conditions.

What is the Groundwater Restricted Zone?

A Groundwater Restriction Zone (GRZ) is a commonly used institutional control established to restrict the use of groundwater for drinking water purposes under certain conditions. The GRZ defines the restricted area and is a legal mechanism that prohibits the use of potable groundwater wells (except in limited circumstances) as part of the County's Sanitary Code.

Is my property in the GRZ?

Properties included in the GRZ are listed in Sections 19d.01 - 19d.07 of the Kalamazoo County Sanitary Code

Is the KLA Group paying for residents' monthly municipal water bills?

No. The KLA Group has, however, agreed to pay for the cost of extending the water mains, hooking up individual homes, and properly abandoning current wells, thereby eliminating potential exposure to COCs, as well as nitrates, bacteria, and other potential contaminants from the hundreds of private septic systems in the area. Homeowners will be responsible for paying their monthly water bill based on their individual use. The cost of operating, servicing and maintaining/replacing a domestic well can be comparable to the cost of municipal water over time.

What are Contaminants of Emerging Concern?

Contaminants of emerging concern, also known as emerging contaminants, are chemicals of potential concern that have been found in the environment that either: (1) do not have regulatory cleanup standards, or (2) regulatory standards are evolving due to new science. Per- and poly- fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are examples of two emerging contaminants.

Are there Contaminants of Emerging Concern associated with the landfill?

PFAS have been reported as detected in groundwater in some locations above Michigan EGLE's current standards. While it is unlikely that the landfill is the sole source of these impacts, by prohibiting groundwater use and providing alternative water sources for the affected areas, the potential risks have been mitigated.

How do I obtain more information or talk to someone about my concerns?

This website,, is a good source of accurate and up to date information on the site, its status and recent progress. For specific questions, contact (888) 625-4724.