Landfill Gas Monitoring: Why Do We Monitor?

Landfill Gas Monitoring: Why Do We Monitor?

It is widely known that landfill gas emissions can present a variety of hazards. Gas monitoring is hence critical during all the stages of a landfill’s lifecycle – being regulated in Australia by each state’s Environment Protection Authority (EPA).

Most prominently, high volumes of combustible methane gas can create explosive hazards within a landfill environment, adjacent properties, as well as residential zones. Methane can migrate significant distances, increasing the risk of exposure or explosion across a wide area. If not attended to, this can result in serious injury, loss of life and extensive property damage.

GasClam 2 Ground Gas Monitor

In this instance, gas monitoring can help identify the concentration of methane within the site, and predict where it is likely to migrate. Portable gas monitors and analysers such as the GA5000 Portable Landfill Gas Analyser, GFM 430 Landfill Gas Analyser, and the Envision Gas Analyser can be used to take spot readings, showing landfill conditions moment-to-moment. Continuous monitors like the GasClam2 Ground Gas Monitor can stay permanently on site, providing long-term, continuous data – particularly useful for identifying anomalies and keeping workers safe.

These instruments allow operators to identify, predict and prevent hazards during the planning, operation and reclamation process of a landfill site. Other hazards and problems associated with landfill gas include: asphyxiation of humans and animals, stress to vegetation, cracking and disruption of the geomembrane in landfill cover, air quality degradation, emission of unpleasant odours, and global warming.

Finally, aside from hazard monitoring, landfill gas monitoring has several other significant applications. It can be used to locate leaks in landfill cover, identify the stages of a landfill’s lifecycle, and ascertain when a site is ready for reclamation. Methane from landfills is also harvested for energy, where gas monitoring can be applied to assist in the process.

Listed below are the EPA Landfill Environmental Guidelines for each state:
Published landfill guidelines exist for most jurisdictions with the exception of Western Australia and ACT1.
NSW | Solid Waste Landfills Environmental Guidelines DOWNLOAD
NT | Siting, Design and Management of Solid Waste Disposal Sites Guidelines DOWNLOAD
QLD | Landfill Siting, Design, Operation and Rehab Guidelines DOWNLOAD
SA | Environmental Management of Landfill Facilities DOWNLOAD
TAS | Landfill Sustainability Guideline DOWNLOAD
VIC | Siting, Design, Operation and Rehabilitation of Landfills DOWNLOAD
VIC | Landfill Gas Fugitive Emissions Monitoring Guideline DOWNLOAD

1 Source: Australian Government, Department of the Environment and Energy

If you have any concerns or questions regarding landfill gas and environmental monitoring, click here or call 1800 000 744 to speak to one of our friendly representatives.


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Fri. 15 Mar 2019

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Landfill Gas Monitoring: Why Do We Monitor?