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Ohio EPA Requiring Sunny Farms Landfill to Address Odors
Ohio EPA has taken enforcement action against Sunny Farms Landfill LLC for persistent odor issues the facility is causing in the community. The orders require Sunny Farms to address odors and related issues at the Fostoria landfill.
In response to downwind air sampling data and complaints by the public about strong, ongoing odors emanating from the landfill in Dec. 2018, Ohio EPA began providing additional assistance to the Seneca County Health Department. The Agency and health department have measured elevated levels of hydrogen sulfide (which smells like rotten eggs) at varying levels throughout the region surrounding the landfill.
The orders signed on Jan. 31 outline several requirements for Sunny Farms Landfill LLC to take to address odors emanating from the landfill, including:
- cover parts of the landfill not currently accepting waste with more soil or a plastic liner (known as an odor control blanket) to limit odors escaping from the landfill;
- install three new air monitors to frequently check hydrogen sulfide levels in the community and submit a weekly report with the data to Ohio EPA and the health department;
- increase odor monitoring in the community and on the surface of the landfill and take additional action where gases are escaping;
- reduce the size of the active working areas of the landfill and place cover soil over all areas that are not receiving waste; and
- continue to maintain a third-party odor complaint hotline. In addition, Sunny Farms must establish a community outreach program including a website and social media forums to notify the community of any malfunction, power outage or event that may cause odors beyond the facility’s boundary.
The complete enforcement agreement is available online.
The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency was created in 1972 to consolidate efforts to protect and improve air quality, water quality and waste management in Ohio. Since then, air pollutants dropped by as much as 90 percent; large rivers meeting standards improved from 21 percent to 89 percent; and hundreds of polluting, open dumps were replaced with engineered landfills and an increased emphasis on waste reduction and recycling.