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Walker Landfill (Washington Township, Macomb County)

EGLE Site Lead: Kevin Wojciechowski, WojciechowskiK@Michigan.gov or 586-623-2948. Webpage last updated January 25, 2021.

Background

Walker Landfill is located at 5001 31 Mile Road, Washington Township.  Prior to a 1965 court order, Walker Landfill reportedly accepted thousands of drums of paint sludge and other wastes related to the automotive industry and disposed in unlined lagoons.  The landfill was licensed by the State of Michigan to accept wastes under Act 87 from 1966 to 1974.  Based on the documented types of wastes accepted, it is highly likely PFAS was part of the automotive waste and garbage.

Based on historical groundwater flow direction, the shallow aquifer(s) have been mapped in every direction over time.  The deep aquifer has more of a northernly flow.  The most recent groundwater flow maps are from the early 2000s. The site has two or three aquifers.  Crooked Lake and Mitchell Lake are located to the west and north of the landfill.  The lakes do have residential homes and are utilized for recreational purposes.

Map of Walker Landfill, Sampling Results  Map of Walker Landfill, Sampling Results

Recent Accomplishments

  • On September 9, 2020, EGLE received the sample results.  The highest PFOS and/or PFOA groundwater sample was 4,130 ppt for PFOA and 41.8 ppt for PFOS.
  • On December 17, 2020 the sampling maps were updated to include all groundwater sampling to date.

Next Steps

  • Based on the results of the second round of PFAS sampling, it appears at this time the sensitive receptors (i.e., surface water and drinking water wells) are not being impacted by the contamination from the landfill.  It appears as it did with historical known contamination, the waste of the landfill is in clay formation and groundwater is only slightly migrating to the south and west.  Currently, EGLE has no plans to conduct any further sampling of Walker Landfill or surrounding properties because the contaminated groundwater is not poising a risk to the sensitive receptors in the area.  

Residential Well Testing/Alternate Water Information

  • None at this time.

Upcoming Community Engagement

  • None scheduled at this time.

Sampling Results Summary

This chart reflects data received after 8/3/2020. Data prior to 8/3/2020 is reflected in the timeline below.

This table was updated to include all seven PFAS criteria effective 12/21/2020.

Type of Sample

Date Sampled (or Range)

Number of Sample Results Received

Number of Samples above Criteria

Groundwater Monitoring Wells

August 2020 4 3
Surface Water August 2020 2 0

* Residential well and groundwater monitoring well results are compared to EGLE Part 201 criteria for 7 PFAS compounds:  PFOS (16 ppt), PFOA (8 ppt), PFNA (6 ppt), PFHxS (51 ppt), PFHxA (400,000 ppt), PFBS (420 ppt), and HFPO-DA (370 ppt).
* Surface water samples are compared to Rule 57 non-drinking water values of 12 ppt for PFOS and 12,000 ppt for PFOA. 

Sampling Notes

  • On August 3, 2020, new Part 201 Criteria went into effect.  Historical sampling data compared to Part 201 Criteria >70 is captured in the historical timeline below. 
 

Historical Timeline

    • On January 9-10, 2020, Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy’s (EGLE) contractor AECOM sampled ten monitoring wells on and surrounding the landfill.
    • On January 31, 2020, EGLE received the sample results.  The highest PFOS + PFOA groundwater sample was 3,909 ppt.
    • On February 24, 2020, EGLE conducted a Skype meeting to update the local officials on the first round of PFAS groundwater results. 

    Historical Sampling Chart: Data is reflective of criteria prior to August 3, 2020,  PFOS and PFOA Only

    This chart reflects data received prior to August 3, 2020.

    Type of Sample

    Date Sampled (or Range)

    Number of Samples

    Number of Results Received

    Number of Non-Detects  Number Between Non-detect and Standard*  Number Greater Than or Equal to Standard 

    Groundwater

    January 2020 10 10 1 8 1
     Cumulative   10 10 1 8 1

     

    *Groundwater results are compared to EGLE Part 201 Criteria of 70 ppt PFOS+PFOA.

     

    • On August 13, 2020, EGLE contractor AECOM conducted a second round of sampling and sampled four monitoring wells on the landfill property and collected two surface water samples.  Surface water samples were collected from the south shore or Mitchell Lake and the unnamed stream that crosses under 31 Mile Road west of the landfill.