Solid Waste Technical Series

Solid Waste Webinar Series

April 22, May 20 and June 24
11 a.m. – 12 noon
Online via the Zoom Platform

Plan to attend this new webinar series hosted by ESD and the Michigan Waste & Recycling Association (MWRA). National PFAS experts will be speaking on a variety of important topics related to these “forever chemicals” at waste disposal facilities. The series is intended for a broad group of environmental professionals representing industry, consulting and regulatory agencies.

Thursday, April 22, 2021

A Multi-Level Structural Approach to Remove PFAS at Arbor Hills Landfill
Presented by: Mala C. Hettiarachchi, PhD, PE, Senior Engineer, Environmental Resources Group, Inc.

There are two two major receivers of PFAS containing waste created by everyone: wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs) and municipal solid waste (MSW) landfills. These two entities will continue to receive waste with various emerging pollutants such as PFAS until appropriate measures are taken to eliminate the real sources at manufacturing. This presentation will discuss the importance of collaboration and development of global leachate management strategies with a vision for the future.

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Treatment Frontiers for Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS)
Presented by Sam Baushke, Senior Engineer, Geosyntec Consultants, Inc., and
Hannah McIntyre, Graduate researcher, University of Missouri, Kansas Ci

Treatment of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) is a challenge, because many PFAS are long-lived or degrade only partially during conventional water treatment methods to form more recalcitrant PFAS. At many landfills, leachate is discharged to wastewater treatment plants or beneficially reused onsite. Given the limited ability of landfills to reduce PFAS concentrations through source control, treatment may be needed at some sites. This presentation will describe new frontiers in PFAS treatment technologies including granular activated carbon (GAC) design and operational considerations for PFAS, passive sequestration approaches, and innovative destructive technologies. Lines of evidence can be used to assess the readiness of destructive PFAS treatment technologies and identify promising technologies. A case study of an innovative destructive approach will be presented. Silica-based granular media (SGM) was developed at the University of Missouri at Kansas City to fully degrade perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS) from 50 milligrams per liter (mg/L) to non-detect concentrations after 30 minutes of contact time. The technology is UV-activated; data are consistent with a combined photocatalytic and nucleophilic destructive mechanism. This media shows promise in cost-effectively degrading recalcitrant PFAS in high-strength or turbid wastewaters, aqueous film-forming foam (AFFF), and other complex matrices such as landfill leachate. This research is currently being funded by the Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP).

Thursday, June 24, 2021

Longer-Term Temporal Trends in PFAS Concentrations at Midwestern Landfills
Presented by: Terry Johnson, Sr. Director of Research and Environmental Protection, Waste Management, Inc.

While considerable data has been generated for current PFAS concentrations in landfill leachate, little published information exists concerning longer-term trends in PFAS compounds in landfill leachate.  In contrast, human blood concentrations have been monitored since the early 2000s, with decreasing trends in legacy PFAS compounds PFOA and PFOS evident presumably as a result of phase out programs.  In this presentation we examine data from four landfills located in similar climatic conditions in the Midwest where monitoring over a span of decade for PFAS has been conducted.  These data are examined in the context of PFOA and PFOS phase out actions and initiatives.  Increased usage of replacement chemicals is also examined.   An understanding of PFAS trends in landfill leachate is important to inform public policy, regulatory matters and other potential actions. 

For over 30 years, ESD has partnered with MWRA to host events focused on cutting-edge technological innovations and solutions related to the solid waste industry. The 31st Annual Solid Waste Technical Conference is scheduled for November 4, 2021.

Webinar attendees can request a certificate of attendance that can be used for eligible continuing education credits based on hours of instruction time.

$25 for ESD/MWRA members: $35 for non-members.

Register online by using the link to the right.

For more information, contact Leslie Smith, CMP, at or 248-353-0735, ext. 152.