Tuesday, August 21, 2018


For years, simply looking at the chemical composition of methane (CH4) I just assumed that methane could be produced both by rotting garbage as well as by the breakdown of various hydrocarbon solvents all of which by definition consist of hydrogen and carbon. Then as the more I started reading on-line articles about methane the less that seemed plausible because none of the experts even remotely suggested it. The icing on the cake was when a friend and environmental colleague also advised me that methane was most certainly the result of food wastes in municipal garbage breaking down, not from solvents.

So now that I've got that firmly wrapped in my head I inadvertently come across a website www.envirogroup.com in which this company is discussing Special Issues in regards to methane in and around old landfills. Lo and behold there is one sentence which reads "Methane may be a by-product of BTEX degradation." I couldn't find any elaboration or clarifcation on that one sentence. Hunh! BTEX by the way stands for benzene, ethyl benzene, toluene, and xylenes all of which are very common solvents.

Sooooo is the high methane readings on the Lot 91 site at the extreme eastern end of Oriole Parkway from the former First St. Landfill separated from Lot 91 by a few feet of Landfill Creek or is the methane from massive dumping of BTEX liquids and their subsequent degradation on the former Varnicolor Chemical site?

Lastly is the ongoing and enduring methane at the Bolender Park Landfill due to purely 100% rotting food stuffs from municipal garbage or is the methane exacerbated by the industrial solvent wastes deposited there by Uniroyal, Varnicolor etc.?

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