Post-closure care (PCC) activities at landfills include cap maintenance; water quality monitoring; maintenance and monitoring of the gas collection/control system, leachate collection system, groundwater monitoring wells, and surface water management system; and general site maintenance. The objective of this study was to develop an integrated data and knowledge based decision making tool for preliminary estimation of PCC needs at closed landfills. To develop the decision making tool, 11 categories of parameters were identified as critical areas which could affect future PCC needs. Each category was further analyzed by detailed questions which could be answered with limited data and knowledge about the site, its history, location, and site specific characteristics. Depending on the existing knowledge base, a score was assigned to each question (on a scale 1-10, as 1 being the best and 10 being the worst). Each category was also assigned a weight based on its relative importance on the site conditions and PCC needs. The overall landfill score was obtained from the total weighted sum attained. Based on the overall score, landfill conditions could be categorized as critical, acceptable, or good. Critical condition indicates that the landfill may be a threat to the human health and the environment and necessary steps should be taken. Acceptable condition indicates that the landfill is currently stable and the monitoring should be continued. Good condition indicates that the landfill is stable and the monitoring activities can be reduced in the future. The knowledge base algorithm was applied to two case study landfills for preliminary assessment of PCC performance.
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