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Solid Waste Facility Monitoring

Article 7 of the state solid waste regulations (18 AAC 60 (PDF)) outlines the monitoring and corrective action requirements for solid waste facilities in Alaska. Monitoring requirements are determined by the type and design of the facility and the type of waste accepted. Monitoring programs must be conducted with care to ensure that the data collected provide the information needed to make informed management and regulatory decisions.

The ADEC Solid Waste Program (SWP) has convened a Monitoring Workgroup made up of SWP regional managers, facilities’ regulators, and technical staff to develop programmatic policies and guidance for monitoring at solid waste facilities across the state. This webpage will be updated with additional guidance and resources as they become available.

For questions contact 907-269-1099.

Groundwater Monitoring

groundwater monitoring well

Hydrogeological Study

The adequacy of a groundwater monitoring program hinges on the characterization of the site’s hydrology. Data of sufficient quantity and quality are required to determine the subsurface geology and hydrology to understand groundwater flow at the site and develop an appropriate groundwater monitoring program. Groundwater is not static in its behavior and therefore continued assessment of the hydrology is also necessary.

Detection Monitoring

The goal of detection monitoring is to determine if the landfill is impacting groundwater quality. Monitoring results are therefore compared to background concentrations.

Assessment Monitoring

Assessment monitoring is required to assess the nature and extent of landfill impacts to groundwater. Monitoring results are therefore compared to groundwater protection standards (GWPS) to determine if a corrective action must be taken to protect human health and the environment.



Surface Water Monitoring

surface water monitoring well

Surface water monitoring is required in accordance with 18 AAC 60.810 at solid waste facilities where surface water pollution is likely to endanger public health or cause a violation of water quality standards in 18 AAC 70.


Visual Monitoring

Documented monthly visual monitoring is required for the active life and post-closure period of a facility [18 AAC 60.396, 18 AAC 60.397, 18 AAC 60.490, & 18 AAC 60.800(a)]. In addition, the permit application for most landfills require that the visual monitoring plan must include the checklist or form that will be used for visual monitoring.

Gas Monitoring

landfill gas monitoring well

Explosive gas monitoring is required in accordance with 18 AAC 60.350 at Class I and Class II municipal solid waste facilities. SWP may also require gas monitoring at any other solid waste facility where we determine that gas control and monitoring are necessary to ensure that there will be no explosion hazard.  

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