ACC Landfill- Maury County, TN
The ACC Landfill Site is located on an approximately 48.02-acre parcel of land located on Arrow Mines Road south of the City of Mt. Pleasant in Maury County, Tennessee. The ACC Landfill is a closed Class II (industrial) solid waste disposal facility that was used for the disposal of aluminum recycling wastes from the Smelter Service Corporation. The disposed wastes consist of “salt cake” slag and bag-house dusts from Smelter Service’s aluminum smelting operations. Salt cake contains high concentrations of highly soluble salts sodium chloride and potassium chloride.
Within a few years of beginning operation, unacceptably high levels of chlorides and ammonia were detected leaching out of the landfill and into the underlying ground water and down-gradient surface water which drains into Sugar Creek and Arrow Lake. Sugar Creek is listed on the State’s 303(d) list of impaired waters due to salinity, total dissolved solids, chlorides, and other causes from an industrial landfill (ACC) and other pollutant sources. Arrow Lake, an impoundment on Sugar Creek, is also listed as impaired due to pH, unionized ammonia, nitrate+nitrite, chlorides, and total phosphorus with listed causes of the ACC landfill and historic surface mining.
In June of 2011, the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) and ACC, LLC entered into a Consent Order intended to remediate extensive environmental problems with the ACC Landfill. After appeal, an Amended and Restated Consent Order was agreed to by both TDEC and ACC in 2012. The 2012 Amended and Restated Consent Order required ACC to, prevent unauthorized discharge of leachate contamination and remove solid waste from the landfill that has the potential for future contact with ground or surface water. ACC excavated and relocated approximately 555,000 cubic yards of waste from 2012 to 2015 and placed the waste into a new landfill that was designed in accordance with current State rules and regulations.
During the corrective action surface water leaving the ACC site was monitored in order to evaluate the effect of the excavation and relocation on surface water quality. With the waste relocation portion of the 2012 Amended and Restated Consent Order completed, the focus of remedial efforts has shifted to the improvement of surface water and groundwater leaving the Site and accompanying improvement in the toxicity of waters of the State. To that end, in 2016, ACC and TDEC entered into another Consent Order focused on surface water leaving the ACC site which continues to violate the Tennessee Water Quality Criteria. The 2016 Consent Order states that “[t]he corrective action objective for surface water is for surface water in (1) the unnamed tributary draining the ACC landfill property to Sugar Creek, and (2) Sugar Creek to not be impaired due to pollutants associated with the ACC landfill.” Additionally the 2016 Consent Order established the corrective action objective for surface water leaving the ACC site to meet the Tennessee Water Quality Criteria. Further, TDEC established a deadline of November 1, 2018 for ACC to meet the Tennessee Water Quality Criteria in surface water. Surface water sampling by ACC from 2012 to the present confirm that contaminated surface water flow from the Site is resulting in high levels of chlorides, ammonia and dissolved solids in Sugar Creek downstream of the Site which exceed the Tennessee Water Quality Criteria.