CLINTON — Owners of Area Disposal plan to step up the game for Clinton Landfill by achieving ISO 14001 status this year, Chris Coulter told the county’s land use committee Monday.
ISO (International Standards Organization) 14001 is a set of rules and standards created to help companies reduce industrial waste and environmental damage. It’s a framework for better environmental management, but it is not required.
Coulter, whose family owns Area Disposal and Peoria Disposal Company, said Clinton Landfill is likely to be the first landfill in Illinois to achieve the rating. The rating will require increased documentation of all the landfill’s operations and practices, he said.
“We have undergone Stage 1 and Stage 2 audits,” Coulter said, in relation to the rating. “Based on the audit, we should receive our ISO 14001 certification by the end of March.
Coulter also said Clinton Landfill for the first time took in a record 400,000 tons of waste in 2019. He said he expected that trend to continue, possibly reaching as much as 410,000 tons in 2020.
Coulter said one reason for the increased volume was the closure of a landfill in McLean County. Another reason was waste sludge Clinton Landfill accepted after a wet 2019 made its use as an agricultural application not feasible.
“That material had to go somewhere, so it ended up coming to Clinton Landfill,” Coulter said.
A byproduct of the sludge was the production of additional methane gas at the landfill. The landfill generates electricity by using the methane.
“We believe that sludge has actually generated gas faster,” Coulter said. “So, we have had some odor complaints in the past couple of weeks. We also could smell it as well.”
To address the issue, they are moving up their schedule to install wells that will capture the additional methane.
“We believe we are going to get that done in the next two weeks,” Coulter said.
Work is scheduled to begin on the wells next week.