Who owns and operates Southwest Landfill?

Southwest Landfill is owned and operated by Southwest Landfill TX, LP.

How much waste is accepted daily?

The facility accepts approximately 800 tons of waste daily.

Where does the waste originate?

Waste is accepted from a 150 mile radius. Most of the waste is generated in the Texas Panhandle, while some originates in New Mexico and Oklahoma.

What types of wastes are accepted at the Landfill?

Southwest Landfill accepts Municipal Solid Waste, Commercial Waste and Non-Hazardous Industrial Waste. We cannot accept tires, batteries, or hazardous wastes.

What environmental protection systems are in place?

Southwest Landfill is operated in a manner designed to protect public health and the environment. We regularly monitor and report our activities to the Texas Commission of Environmental Quality (TCEQ), and we strive to meet or exceed all state and federal regulations. All waste is disposed of within the boundary of a constructed landfill area that has been engineered to protect the environment and meets all federal, state and local regulations. There are many environmental protection systems at Southwest Landfill.

Landfill liner: The liner at the base of the Landfill consists of 2 feet of compacted clay liner, a high-density polyethylene liner, a fabric drainage layer, gravel drainage corridors and leachate collection pipes, and 2 feet of protective cover. In total, 5 feet of constructed liner creates a barrier between the waste and the natural environment. All of the liners are thoroughly tested to meet regulations and ensure proper engineering construction standards.

Leachate collection: Protection of all water sources is a priority at Southwest Landfill. The Landfill is designed with a state of the art composite liner system designed to contain any leachate that percolates through the solid waste. Once collected, the leachate is recirculated at the facility. Surface water runoff is controlled through a series of diversion berms and drainage ditches to preserve its quality.

Rainwater collection: Rainwater that does not touch any waste must be managed appropriately. Stormwater runoff is collected and contained in detention ponds onsite.

Groundwater monitoring: Southwest Landfill assesses groundwater with 19 individual groundwater monitoring wells. Each well is routinely tested to verify the groundwater’s quality.

Gas collection: Once trash is disposed of, it naturally decomposes and produces gas. A landfill gas management system collects gas through a series of pipes and 78 gas wells. Collected gas is safely destroyed at an on-site flare. The gas system, on-site structures and gas probes are regularly monitored to prevent gas emissions and gas migration.

Final capping: Once we bring our elevation to final grade, we place a final cover over the top to entomb the waste. This cover keeps liquids out and gases in and ensures protection of the environment. The cap includes 24 inches of soil or clay, a low-density polyethylene liner, a geocomposite layer, and 18 inches of topsoil and vegetation.

Who permits and inspects the facility?

The facility is fully permitted and inspected by the Texas Commission of Environmental Quality (TCEQ) annually, or more often.

Why do we need a landfill?

The residents and businesses in the Amarillo-Canyon area generate hundreds of tons of municipal solid waste on a daily basis. Southwest Landfill serves as one outlet for proper trash disposal for this waste.

Is the Landfill really important to our community?

The Landfill is an integral part of the local economy and infrastructure. It provides jobs for local residents and affordable, responsible waste disposal options for residents and businesses.

What additional steps are taken to ensure that the Landfill is a good neighbor?

Proper daily operations are critical to environmentally sound waste disposal. All employees at Southwest Landfill are trained to handle incoming waste in the most environmentally responsible manner. Access to the site is limited to one entrance/exit. The facility records and tracks all waste shipments with gate receipts and a network of video cameras. Each load of incoming waste is visually inspected to ensure that only permitted materials are accepted for disposal. Once unloaded, the waste is visually inspected again. At the end of each working day, daily cover is placed over the waste. Steps are also taken to control dust, litter and odor.

How do you control odors?

Landfill gas and odors are controlled with responsible landfill management practices such as waste compaction, applying daily cover per our permit, and the use of an effective landfill gas collection and control system, which includes 78 individual landfill gas wells. Landfill personnel conduct routine odor inspections to prevent off-site odor and address odor as quickly as possible once detected. The Landfill gas system is upgraded and expanded on a regular frequency as the Landfill grows.

What is the life expectancy of the Landfill?

There is capacity for approximately 8 more years of disposal at current disposal rates.

What happens once the Southwest Landfill stops being used as a landfill?

Once the Landfill is filled to capacity, a final landfill capping system will be installed that consists of an engineered soil liner, cover soils, and a vegetation layer. At that time the site could be used as an open green space, parks, wildlife viewing area, or nature trails.

The site will also be maintained for an additional 30 years in post-closure care after the final closure.  This care includes continued groundwater monitoring, leachate management, and compliance reporting until such time the Texas Commission of Environmental Quality (TCEQ) approves the site for final closure.

How long does it take for something to breakdown in a landfill?

Organic waste can decompose within months, while non-organic waste such as plastics and glass can take 450-1,000 years to fully decompose.

When is the Landfill open for business?

Southwest Landfill is open Monday through Friday from 7:00 am-5:00 pm, and on Saturdays from 8:00 am-12:00 pm. Southwest Landfill is closed on Sundays and major holidays.

Can I take a tour of the Landfill?

Yes, landfill tours are offered. Please call (806) 326-6245 to arrange a time for a tour.