On this page:
- Site Background
- EPA’s Involvement at this Site
- Site Status
- Work to Protect Human Health and the Environment
- Site Risks
- Community Resources
The 65-acre Moyers Landfill site is located in Lower Providence Township in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania. A municipal landfill operated at the site from the early 1940s until April 1981. The landfill accepted municipal waste, sewage and industrial sludges, including solid and liquid hazardous wastes. Disposal practices at the landfill contaminated soil, sediment, groundwater, surface water and fish tissue with hazardous chemicals. Following cleanup, operation and maintenance activities are ongoing.
EPA’s Involvement at this Site
In 1985, the EPA selected a remedy for controlling the source of the pollution. It included: grading and leveling the site; constructing retaining walls at highly erodible areas; capping the site with a low-permeability soil; installing a gas vent system that prevents accumulating gas from rupturing the cap; collecting surface runoff and discharging it directly into the creek; installing a leachate collection and removal system; treating collected leachate and discharging it; and continuing to monitor groundwater and surface waters. The engineering design for the cleanup remedy, undertaken by the Army Corps of Engineers, was completed in 1989. Construction of the collection trench was completed in July 1992. However, due to community concerns the landfill cap was re-designed to minimize the amount of imported soil needed.
Construction of the cap began in the Summer of 1993. The cap construction was completed in November 1994. Additional erosion and sedimentation control units were completed during early 1997, as well as the leachate pumping system. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP) petitioned EPA to change the remedial action to leachate treatment at a Publically Owned Treatment Works. This action was not able to be implemented when the ROD was signed, but is more cost effective than the original remedy
In 2000, EPA issued an Explanation of Significant Differences to facilitate the change in the remedial action. As part of this change three actions were required: (1) construction of leachate holding tanks by the EPA; (2) updating of the leachate transfer system by PADEP; and (3) construction of a sewer line interceptor by the county. Leachate began to flow to the Publically Owned Treatment Works in September 2002, when construction at the site was completed.
In September 2009, EPA issued a Second Explanation of Significant Differences to add Institutional Controls into the remedy. The Institutional Controls to protect the remedy were implemented when Lower Providence Township enacted an ordinance on October 20, 2011.
PADEP is currently performing the operations and maintenance at the site. All the cleanup actions are in place and are operating as intended.
The EPA and Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP) successfully completed the construction of the cleanup action at the Site in September 2002. The remedial cleanup action at the Moyer's Landfill site was to cap the landfill and to collect and transfer the leachate to a Publicly Owned Treatment Works for treatment. Institutional controls to protect the remedy were implemented when Lower Providence Township enacted an ordinance on October 20, 2011.
The second Five-Year Review Report (2012) found that the remedy has been constructed in accordance with the requirements of the ROD and is functioning as designed. The immediate threats have been addressed though capping the landfill and collecting and properly disposing of the leachate. Long-term protectiveness of the remedy will be maintained by continuing to perform operation and maintenance of the landfill cap and leachate collection system; monitoring the groundwater and ambient air; and enforcing the institutional controls.
Since all appropriate cleanup actions have been implemented and no further cleanup actions are appropriate, EPA and the State have determined that cleanup actions conducted at the site, to date, have been protective of public health, welfare, and the environment. Therefore, EPA published an intent to delete the Site from the National Priorities List (NPL) on March 27, 2014. Since no comments were received during the 30 day public comment period, the deletion became final on May 27, 2014. Deletion does not preclude future cleanup actions under Superfund.
Work to Protect Human Health and the Environment
The site is being addressed through federal and state actions. The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP) is currently performing operation and maintenance activities at the site.
Construction of the collection trench finished in July 1992. Cap construction finished in November 1994. Additional erosion and sedimentation control units finished in early 1997, as well as the leachate pumping system.
EPA modified the remedy in 2000 to allow for discharge of leachate to a publicly owned treatment works. Modifications for the updated remedy finished in September 2002. EPA modified the remedy a second time in 2009 by adding institutional controls to the remedy. Institutional controls to protect the remedy were implemented when Lower Providence Township enacted an ordinance in October 2011.
EPA has conducted several five-year reviews of the site’s remedy. These reviews ensure that the remedies put in place protect public health and the environment, and function as intended by site decision documents. The most recent review concluded that response actions at the site are in accordance with the remedy selected by EPA and that the remedy continues to be protective of human health and the environment.
EPA investigated the on-site and off-site ground water, leachates, and soil. Contaminants found included heavy metals and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from former waste disposal practices. The surface water was polluted with VOCs. PCBs were found in the trout in the surrounding streams. Leachate and affected sediments contained substantial levels of contaminants and therefore may have posed risks to individuals who accidentally ingested, inhaled, or came into direct contact with them. Drinking contaminated ground water or consuming contaminated trout also may have also posed significant threats.
However, after cleanup, the waste no longer impacts the environment or public health. Long-term protectiveness of the remedy will be maintained by continuing to perform operation and maintenance of the landfill cap and leachate collection system; monitoring the groundwater and ambient air; and enforcing institutional controls.
To read the latest five-year review of the site, visit 2012 Five-Year Review.
To learn more about the contaminants of conern at the site, visit Hazardous Substances Fact Sheets.
Community involvement is the process of engaging in dialogue and collaboration with community members. The goal of Superfund community involvement is to advocate and strengthen early and meaningful community participation during Superfund cleanups. Read about ways you can participate in EPA’s Community Involvement Program.
EPA celebrates 35 years of the Superfund Program: Read about sites in your states where Superfund has made a difference in protecting human health and the environment.