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Countywide : Gas Control Systems OKd for Landfills

County supervisors agreed unanimously Tuesday to fully install a gas-control system at the Olinda Alpha landfill by July 31 and to hook up similar devices at two other county-run landfills by unspecified deadlines in order to avoid $75,000 daily fines and possible closure of the trash disposal sites.

The 5-0 vote approved a settlement between the county and the South Coast Air Quality Management District that was hammered out after the county missed a Jan. 1 deadline to have the systems operating at the Olinda Alpha facility in Brea, the Prima Deshecha Canyon fill in San Juan Capistrano and the Santiago Canyon fill in East Orange.

The district, which requires the devices to keep potentially toxic gases, such as benzene, from entering the air, could have fined the county $25,000 per landfill for each day the devices were not operational. As an extreme resort, it could have closed the facilities, which represent 75% of the county’s landfill capacity. Bert Scott, director of the county General Services Agency, said last week that the county missed the deadline because there were last-minute changes in a plan to use the devices to generate electricity as well as keep the air clean.


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