- The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) is seeking to amend the state rules around solid waste, recycling and air pollution control, as reported by Enviro.BLR.com. This is being done to implement provisions of the 2013 Legacy Landfill Law passed by the state legislature.
- A "legacy landfill" is defined as any site which closed before 1982 and contains material which would be defined as hazardous under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, but received that material before the law was enacted in 1976.
- A public hearing on the full details of this proposal will be held on Sep. 23 at the DEP’s offices in Trenton, NJ.
The 2013 law established requirements as a way to encourage proper closure of legacy sites, allow redevelopment of closed sites and prevent future issues. The law also requires municipal involvement for any redevelopment of these sites and the DEP's proposed regulations will set up a system for the state to help communities comply.
DEP is addressing the law's requirements through proposing new regulations so communities will have a strong set of rules around closure procedures and post-closure maintenance for the future. In addition, the DEP has proposed extending some of the law's requirements to all sanitary landfills — open or closed — and clarifying some existing rules.
As seen in the ongoing legal battle over closing the Keegan Landfill, landfill politics can be contentious in New Jersey. Though many of these requirements were included in the 2013 law it's unclear whether any of the DEP's additional proposals will face opposition. In a broad sense, having specific regulations around landfill closure is a logical step that helps mitigate the potential for environmental issues.