Tier II Gas Sampling for Forty West Landfill, Washington County Division of Environmental Management, Hagerstown, MD

Buchart Horn performed a five-year update of the US Environmental Protection Authority’s New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) Tier II Landfill Gas Analysis at the Forty West Landfill near Hagerstown, MD.

Tier II work completed included the following:

  • Preparation of a Site-Specific Health and Safety Plan.
  • Coordination and communication with the Maryland Department of Environment (MDE).
  • Preparation of a Testing Protocol Plan, which was submitted to, and quickly approved by, the MDE.
  • Collection of gas samples using geo-probe direct-drive drilling equipment. A MDE representative was on-site during the drilling and sampling process. Per USEPA regulations, two push probes were located per hectare of landfill surface that had retained waste for at least two years. To verify no ambient air short-circuited the probes, and to assist in purging 2-3 probe volumes, a Landtec GEM 2000 was used to extract and analyze the probe gasses. The GEM unit was used to measure the carbon dioxide (CO2), oxygen (O2), and methane (CH4) gas measurement concentrations. Once BH determined no oxygen was present in each push probe location, as indicated by the GEM unit, the composite sampling of that probe began. Three probes were composited into one summa canister. The gas samples were analyzed for non-methane organic compounds NMOCs using Method 25C of Appendix A of the USEPA’s NSPS Subpart WWW – Standards of Performance for Municipal Solid Waste Landfills.
  • The NMOC concentrations were then incorporated into the solid waste industry standard gas generation model (LandGEM). Based on the April 2012 NMOC field measurements and the information obtained during the Tier 2 evaluation, current and projected annual NMOC quantities generated by the landfill were below 50 megagrams, and therefore, the County was not required to install a landfill gas collection system.

Prior to this project, BH had limited dealings with the MDE Solid Waste Division; however, through our commitment and coordination efforts on every front, BH was able to establish a positive relationship with MDE at the initiation of the project. This in turn allowed for the successful completion of the project.

BH’s work enabled the County to satisfy the MDE and USEPA requirements without the cost of installing a gas collection system. Our responsiveness to a tight three-week deadline from notice-to-proceed, to approved Health and Safety Plan, to approved MDE Work Plan, to sample collection, maintained the County’s positive relationship with the MDE and prevented any negative regulatory action. BH also used cost-effective technology to collect gas samples while still maintaining sample integrity, thereby saving the County money.