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Poway Landfill

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Aerial Photo of Poway Landfill

The Poway landfill, located south of Poway Road, west of Espola Road , and north of Dehia Street was a solid waste landfill operated by the County of San Diego Department of Public Works from 1949 until 1975. The landfill is about 14 acres and contains approximately 165,000 tons of trash with an average thickness of 30 feet. The landfill was allowed to accept residential, commercial and agricultural wastes. No septic, industrial chemical or liquid waste disposal was authorized. The landfill was designed and operated using the best available technology required at the time of operation. The landfill has a gas extraction system consisting of gas collection wells, piping and a flare station to control landfill generated gas (primarily methane, which is created by the decomposition of buried trash). 

The Problem

While investigating the extent of low concentration solvent (tetrachloroethene (PCE) and trichloroethane (TCE)) contamination in ground water within the landfill boundary, very low levels of benzene and solvents were found in soil vapor test probes in the neighborhood street adjacent to the southern toe of the landfill. Benzene is the compound that is of most concern at this time. No actual exposure to benzene or other chemicals has been confirmed. Benzene was not detected in the neighborhood outdoor air samples. All municipal water for the neighborhood is imported from the City of Poway. Ground water is not used for drinking or other municipal purposes in the area.

Please click on the frequently asked questions link for more detailed information regarding benzene and the other compounds detected.

Further Monitoring

In order to make a more definitive conclusion regarding health impacts and to determine the source and extent of the benzene contamination, the County's Department of Public Works (DPW) is conducting additional data collection (drilling bore holes, collection of soil, soil gas, and ground water samples) on landfill property, public right-of-ways, and some residential properties. The sampling will be conducted during the months of March and April with result information being available by June.  The LEA and the California Regional Water Control Board (RWQCB) are overseeing and reviewing the investigations conducted by DPW.

Future Meetings

Public meetings will be held after additional sampling results are received.  

There are no future meetings scheduled at this time.

A meeting notice will be mailed to affected residents and an e-mail will be sent to those on our e-mail list.  Please contact the LEA via e-mail if you wish to be notified by e-mail of upcoming meetings.

Additional Information