DEP OKs Alliance’s landfill assessment
The Department of Environmental Protection
(DEP) has approved the environmental assessment of Alliance Sanitary
Landfill’s proposed expansion in Taylor Borough and Ransom Township,
The assessment represents the first phase of the department’s
review of the proposal.
“Alliance documented that the environmental, social and economic
benefits clearly outweighed the potential environmental harms.
As such, we have approved this first phase of their expansion
application,” said Northeast regional director Michael Bedrin.
“This is only the first step in the process. A comprehensive
review of the engineering and technical aspects of their application
will now begin.”
Alliance Landfill applied for an 87.3 acre expansion of its lined
disposal area and an increase in its average daily volume from
2,000 tons per day to 4,000 tons per day.
DEP held a public hearing on the environmental assessment, also
known as the harms/benefits analysis in January.
The assessment process requires landfills to provide a detailed
analysis that describes the proposed facility’s potential impact
on the environment, public health and public safety; and the
known and potential harms of the proposed project.
The analysis must include a written mitigation plan that explains
how the landfill will deal with each known or potential harm,
as well as the extent to which any known or potential harms will
remain after mitigation. It must also demonstrate that the benefits
to the public clearly outweigh the project’s known and potential
In approving the Alliance assessment, DEP evaluated the social
and economic benefits to the municipalities and found that the
benefits included: free waste disposal; recycling and environmental
education programs; the landfill’s support for watershed and
community groups; and the host municipality agreements with Taylor
Borough and Ransom Township.
The potential environmental impacts identified during the application’s
review included dust and odors, diminished aesthetics, additional
noise and litter, improperly contained truck loads, and general
transportation issues, among others.
The Pennsylvania Department of Health and the federal Agency
for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) evaluated air
monitoring data from DEP and Alliance, and recently concluded
that the landfill would not be expected to harm the public’s
The environmental assessment approval does not authorize changes
to the landfill’s permit. That decision will be made based on
the company’s ability to meet the department’s solid waste engineering
and technical regulations.