In accordance with federal regulations, 412th Civil Engineering and Edwards Air Force Base Environmental Management have come up with a plan to clean up and maintain the Site 3 Main Base Inactive Landfill.
Brig. Gen. Michael Brewer, 412th Test Wing commander, signed a Record of Decision Sept. 14 with Team Edwards members present who were involved in coordinating and outlining the plan.
The Site 3 landfill is located close to the Main Base Active Landfill in the northwestern region of the base and has not been used since the 1970s.
The Record of Decision documents the final remedies selected for Site 3 to ensure the no longer-used landfill meets environmental standards. The remedies were selected to protect human health and the environment. They were jointly selected by the U.S. Air Force and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency with the concurrence of the California Environmental Protection Agency Department of Toxic Substances Control and the Regional Water Quality Control Board – Lahontan Region.
The remedies include waste consolidation to reduce the footprint of the landfill from 67 acres to 32.7 acres. This will be done by recycling debris from Site 3 and by disposing of non-recyclable debris in waste cells within the 32.7 acre footprint.
An evapotranspiration cover (1.5 feet of soil; .5 feet of topsoil; and vegetation) will be installed over the 1 to 2 feet of existing soil cover. This will keep rainwater from reaching the buried debris. If water reaches the debris it can become contaminated and seep into groundwater.
Rebecca Hobbs, Edwards AFB Environmental Restoration Program Manager, worked on the Site 3 ROD and said there is a level of contamination in the groundwater under the Site 3 Landfill.
“The State of California considers all groundwater to be potentional drinking water,” said Hobbs. “However, Site 3 groundwater is not used for consumption and a requirement of the ROD is to monitor the groundwater to ensure solvent contamination in the water is not migrating and is naturally degrading.”
Additionally, a channel will be dug around the site to ensure stormwater is kept from running over the landfill surface.
Land Use Controls will also be implemented to ensure no digging is performed in the buried debris and the groundwater is not used as a source of drinking water.