Who owns and operates Foothills Landfill?

Foothills Landfill is owned and operated by Allied Waste Systems of Colorado, LLC.

How much waste is accepted daily?

The facility accepts approximately 1,600 tons of waste in and around the Denver Metro Area.

Where does the waste originate?

The waste disposed of at Foothills Landfill is generated at homes and businesses from all across the Denver Metro Area.

What types of wastes are accepted at the Landfill?

Foothills Landfill accepts municipal solid waste, commercial waste and non-hazardous industrial waste including non-friable asbestos. We cannot accept electronic waste, whole tires, lead-acid batteries, friable asbestos, or hazardous wastes.

What environmental protection systems are in place?

Foothills Landfill is operated in a manner designed to protect public health and the environment. We regularly monitor and report our activities to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and Jefferson County Public Health, and we strive to meet or exceed all state and federal regulations. All waste is disposed of within the boundary of a constructed landfill area that has been engineered to protect the environment and meets all federal, state and local regulations. There are many environmental protection systems at Foothills Landfill.

Landfill liner: The liner at the base of the landfill consists of 2 feet of compacted clay liner, a high-density polyethylene liner, a fabric or sand drainage layer, gravel drainage corridors and leachate collection pipes. In total, there are 2.5 feet of constructed liner between the waste and the natural environment. All of the liners are thoroughly tested to meet regulations and ensure proper engineering construction standards.

Leachate collection: Protection of all water sources is a priority at Foothills Landfill. The Landfill is designed with a state of the art composite liner system designed to contain any leachate that percolates through the solid waste. Once collected, the leachate is recycled. Surface water runoff is controlled through a series of diversion berms and drainage ditches to preserve its quality.

Rainwater collection: Rainwater that does not touch any waste must also be managed appropriately. Storm water runoff is safely diverted and discharged to a nearby waterway. Visual inspections are conducted monthly, and analysis is done quarterly, as applicable.

Groundwater monitoring: Foothills Landfill assesses groundwater with 8 individual groundwater monitoring wells. Each well is routinely tested to verify the groundwater’s quality.

Gas collection: Once trash is disposed of, it naturally decomposes and produces gas. A landfill gas management system collects gas through a series of pipes and more than 54 gas wells. Collected gas is directed to an on-site flare where it is safely destroyed. The gas collection system is regularly monitored to prevent gas emissions and gas migration.

Final capping: Once we bring our elevation to final grade, we place a final cover over the top to entomb the waste. This cover keeps liquids out and gases in and ensures protection of the environment. The cap includes 30 inches of soil, and 6 inches of topsoil and vegetation.

Who permits and inspects the facility?

Foothills Landfill is permitted and inspected by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and Jefferson County Public Health.

Why do we need a landfill?

The Denver Metro Area has a population of 2.5 million people who generate household waste on a daily basis. Foothills Landfill serves as one outlet for proper trash disposal for this waste.

Is the Landfill really important to our community?

Absolutely! The landfill is an integral part of the local economy and infrastructure. It provides jobs for local residents and affordable, responsible waste disposal options for residents and businesses.

What additional steps are taken to ensure that the Landfill is a good neighbor?

Proper daily operations are critical to environmentally sound waste disposal. All employees at Foothills Landfill are trained to handle incoming waste in the most environmentally responsible manner. Access to the site is limited to one entrance/exit. The facility records and tracks all waste shipments with gate receipts and a network of video cameras. Each load of incoming waste is visually inspected to ensure that only permitted materials are accepted for disposal. Once unloaded, the waste is visually inspected again. At the end of each working day, daily cover is placed over the waste. Steps are also taken to control dust, litter and odor. Periodic watering of access roads prevents dust from rising when trucks travel in and out of the landfill. Litter is minimized by limiting the size of the active disposal area, applying daily cover and using fencing on windy days to catch blowing materials. Any litter that blows off-site is collected by landfill personnel daily.

How do you control odors?

Landfill gas and odors are controlled with responsible landfill management practices such as waste compaction, applying daily cover per our permit, and the use of an effective landfill gas collection and control system, which includes 54 individual landfill gas wells. Landfill personnel conduct routine odor inspections to prevent off-site odor and deal with odor as quickly as possible once detected. The landfill gas system is upgraded and expanded on a regular frequency as the landfill grows.

What is the life expectancy of the landfill?

There is capacity for approximately 30 more years of disposal at current disposal rates.

What happens once Foothills Landfill stops being used as a landfill?

Once the landfill is filled to capacity, a final landfill capping system will be installed that consists of an engineered soil liner, cover soils, and a vegetation layer. At that time the site could be used as an open green space, parks, wildlife viewing area, or nature trails.

The site will be maintained for an additional 30 years in post-closure care after the final closure, which includes continued groundwater monitoring, leachate management, and compliance reporting until which time CDPHE and Jefferson County approve the site for final closure. The cost of the closure construction and the post closure care period are guaranteed by bond maintained by Foothills Landfill and held by CDPHE.

How long does it take for something to breakdown in a landfill?

Organic waste can decompose within months, while non-organic waste such as plastics and glass can take 450-1,000 years to fully decompose.

When is the Landfill open for business?

Foothills Landfill is open Monday through Friday from 6:30am-5:00pm, and on Saturdays from 7:00am-3:00pm. Foothills Landfill is closed on Sundays and major holidays.

Can I take a tour of the Landfill?

Yes, landfill tours are offered. Please call (303) 371-5115 to arrange a time for a tour.

In Summary

We are proud to partner with the communities where we are located and the enterprises we serve. We believe that listening to community concerns and considering recommendations as we operate our divisions and facilities make good business sense. We also choose to give priority hiring considerations to qualified people from the local community. We thank you for the opportunity to share this information with you and hope that we have given you additional insight as to who we are and how we operate.