Press Release

For Immediate Release
Contact: Cara Smith
877-844-5461 (TTY)
January 10, 2007


Springfield – Attorney General Lisa Madigan today said that the Cook County Circuit Court has entered an order expanding and strengthening earlier requirements that the owners of a Hillside landfill bring the facility into compliance with environmental laws, including preventing the uncontrolled release of landfill gas and leachate at and from the site.

Because of continuing odors and problems at the landfill, located at 4100 W. Frontage Road, Madigan’s office has worked to expand the existing court orders to require additional action by the landfill owners. 

The latest agreement with the defendants, Congress Development Company (CDC), John Sexton Sand & Gravel Corp. and Allied Waste Transportation, Inc., requires that they pursue work plans specifically designed to evaluate and control all of the causes of odors, gas migration and leachate releases at the site.  Under the order, the defendants must obtain approval for the work plans from the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) and Madigan’s office.  The order requires that the defendants perform work in the following areas:

  • Landfill Gas Management System – Defendants must evaluate the effectiveness of the existing gas collection and control system and propose and implement necessary remedies to effectively manage the landfill gas.

  • Site Wide Odor Control Plan Defendants must evaluate the full nature and extent of odors across the entire site and propose and implement remedies to effectively eliminate such odors.

  • Pyrolysis/Oxidation – Defendants must evaluate all the causes and contributing factors of elevated temperatures, pressures and oxygen levels within all areas below the ground surface of the landfill where such elevated temperatures, pressures and oxygen levels exist and propose and implement remedies to eliminate subsurface pyrolysis, or oxidation.

  • Gas Migration – Defendants must evaluate gas migration from the landfill and propose and implement appropriate remedies to eliminate off-site gas migration.

  • Retention Pond - Defendants must propose and implement appropriate remedies to prevent leachate and landfill liquids other than stormwater from entering the facility’s stormwater collection system and prevent the quality of water discharged from the retention pond from violating the facility’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (“NPDES”) stormwater discharge limits. 

  • Leachate Management – Defendants must evaluate the quality and quantity of leachate that the site generates and propose and implement appropriate remedies to prevent failures of the leachate management system and leachate releases.

“We are very concerned that neighboring residents and businesses continue to endure offensive odors and other problems caused by the landfill,” Madigan said. “My office will continue to scrutinize what the owners do to bring the Hillside Landfill into compliance with the law.”

The defendants are required to submit weekly reports addressing the relevant work required under each part of the order.  CDC and the other defendants also must pay for a professional engineer to assist the State in reviewing the work plans and the progress of the work.

In 2006, Madigan’s office filed an Agreed Preliminary Injunction and Order to require CDC to install a new gas collection system at the site to alleviate the release of noxious gas from the landfill.  Later, the court entered a second order to address subsurface gas migration to surrounding buildings and additional odor control measures.  These orders have resolved the gas migration problem, but the odor problem at the site has continued.

While today’s order does not resolve the case entirely, it is designed to address many areas of alleged noncompliance on the site, to alleviate significant odors emanating from the landfill and to control leachate at the landfill.

Supervising Attorney Elizabeth Wallace and Assistant Attorney General Vanessa Vail are handling the case for Madigan’s Environmental Bureau.


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