What is the current status of the site?
The environmental status of the site is being managed full time by Kildare County Council keeping it stable. There has been no significant impact on groundwater, surface water or air quality in the surrounding area to date. Key risks to groundwater quality and air quality are actively managed due to interim measures undertaken by Kildare County Council, however without the full remediation of the site, a significant risk of environmental impact remains. Kildare County Council monitors the environment to detect any slight change and there are a number of measures planned and in place if any change occurs.
Why does the site require remediation?
Kerdiffstown Landfill still poses a number of risks to the environment and therefore requires full remediation. The environmental threat to water is one of the significant risks the site poses, as landfill leachate, which is coming from waste onsite, is seeping into the groundwater. There is potential for this groundwater to migrate and to contaminate the River Morell, a tributary of the River Liffey. Other significant environmental issues at the site relate to the production of landfill gases which in previous years resulted in significant odour impact on the local community. Some of the gases from the site, like carbon dioxide and methane, also contribute to Ireland’s greenhouse gas emissions. With remediation, these gases will be effectively managed and their odour causing potential and impact on climate change will be significantly reduced.
How will the site be remediated?
The Department of the Environment, Local Community and Government (now under Department of Communications, Climate Change and Environment) were presented with three remediation options in 2013. The preferred option was refined and subjected to an Environmental Impact Assessment, which was completed in August 2017. The associated Environmental Impact Assessment Report (EIAR) is available on this website. The remediation solution balances the long term performance of the remediated site and the environmental impact of the remediation works. A balanced approach of making the waste safe and putting a waterproof cap over it was the favoured option and is the tried and trusted option for many historic landfills worldwide. Once the site has been remediated the end use for the site will be as a multi-use public park.
Why did Kildare County Council take over the remediation project?
Kildare County Council took over the remediation project from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for a number of reasons. Firstly, the remediation process proposed required planning permission, for which Kildare County Council was able to apply. Additionally, the site required a licence from the EPA to undertake the remediation. The EPA would not be in a position to self grant or enforce this licence. Kildare County Council also has experience in remediating landfill sites. Additionally, they have skilled staff with the expertise to manage all aspects of the project.
How is the remediation project managed and regulated?
Kildare County Council took on the management of Kerdiffstown Landfill Remediation Project in June 2015 under the terms of a Memorandum of Understanding between the local authority and the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government. As part of this a dedicated project team has been established onsite.
As well as the management of the scheme by the team, the project is subject to regulatory safeguards arising from statutory permissions granted by An Board Pleanála and the EPA. Approval was granted by An Bord Pleanála in May 2018 to the Council's planning application for the project, (and associated Environmental Impact Assessment Report), along with the compulsory purchase order for the scheme. The approval to the EIAR in particular carries with it conditions which the Council must comply with during the construction of the project. In addition, the EPA approved the necessary licence for the project in March 2019. The requirements of this licence have been incorporated into the detailed design of the project. As part of the conditions of the licence, Kildare County Council will be required to undertake detailed environmental monitoring and to demonstrate that they are meeting the strict emission limits for the project. The EPA will also independently monitor air and water quality and regularly inspect the site to ensure the licence is complied with.
How will the remediation project be funded?
The Minister has confirmed that the Department of Communications, Climate Change and Environment will fund the costs of remediation and ongoing management costs of remediation. The Department is aware that this remediation project is a complex, multi-annual project which will require significant investment over a period of five to seven years.
What is the anticipated start date for the remediation works?
The procurement of a contractor for the remediation of the site is nearing completion. It is hoped that a contractor will be appointed in October 2020, with works to commence in November 2020.
As well as the main remediation works, some related infrastructural works have been carried out e.g. the realignment of the L2005 road, which is currently nearing completion, (October 2020).
How long will the remediation project take?
The remediation project and the construction of the multi-use public park are anticipated to take between three and five years to complete. Within this period of time, there will be a construction period when intensive construction will take place on site. Site roads, leachate and surface water management systems, landfill gas management systems, monitoring networks and ancillary works will be completed during this time.
After the remediation works are complete, Kildare County Council will continue to operate under the necessary licence conditions, which provide for the regular environmental monitoring and ongoing maintenance of the remediated site.
How will the remediation process affect local residents?
The remediation process may affect local residents for limited periods of time. For example, residents may notice intermittent odours when certain parts of the remediation works are being undertaken; however, every measure will be taken during this timeframe to minimise any impact to local residents. The local community will be kept fully informed if planned works may cause an impact and for how long this may occur. The vast majority of the remediation work programme will not cause any odour with only limited, well defined, parts of the site being significant sources of odour. Works will be carefully planned to minimise movement of any odorous material, but inevitably there will be set periods when it may be necessary to alert the local community of the potential for odours to occur.
Where will I find project updates?
Further information and community updates will be posted on the Kildare County Council website here as the remediation project continues, with a view to keeping the public fully informed on progress in a timely manner. If you would like to raise an issue at the Community Liaison Group Meetings, please ensure to speak to your local residents group or contact us directly at Tel: 045-980488. The project team welcomes any opportunity to engage with the local community. All Media inquiries should be directed to the Kildare County Council Press Office (firstname.lastname@example.org).
How can I contact the project team with any questions or comments?
If you wish to contact the project team, please dial 045-980488 (Mon – Fri, 09.00 – 17.00) or the Kildare County Council out of hours contact number is 1890 50 03 33. Alternatively you can email the project team at email@example.com