Western Berks Community Landfill & Rec
(Formerly: Western Berks Refuse Authority)
EPA Project Manager
Ms. Maureen Essenthier- 3LC30
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency - Region III
1650 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103-2029
Phone: (215) 814-3416
PA Department of Environmental Protection
Mr. Kurt Fritz
Southcentral Regional Office
909 Elmerton Avenue
Harrisburg, PA 17110-8200
This facility is one of EPA Region III’s high priority RCRA corrective action sites
The Western Berks Community Landfill and Recycling Center facility operates as a permitted, active Municipal Waste Landfill. As such, current and future access is restricted to required operation and maintenance activity. The facility is fenced to prevent unauthorized access. Current and future groundwater use is restricted to monitoring and maintenance activities
The PA Department of Environmental Protection (PADEP) routinely inspects the facility for compliance with its permit requirements (Solid Waste Permit No. 100739). Groundwater is monitored as part of the Facility-wide monitoring required under the State Permit. There are currently 18 groundwater monitoring wells; one background well and 17 perimeter wells. With the construction of the Eastern Expansion (current fill site), only one private off-site well is available to be sampled. The sampling schedule is prescribed by the State Permit. Wells are monitored on a quarterly, semi-annual, or annual schedule, based on the specific needs of the Site that each well is monitoring.
A leachate collection system collects the leachate that is generated from the disposal areas. Leachate from the hazardous waste cell is collected and trucked off-site for treatment. Leachate from the non-hazardous cells is treated at an on-site plant located at the southern perimeter of the Facility property adjacent to the Schuylkill. It operates under NPDES Permit PA 0054852, issued by PADEP. The treated water is discharged to the Schuylkill.
The Western.Berks Refuse Authority landfill is located approximately 13 miles southeast of Reading, PA. The property includes over 200 acres and seven disposal sites; including five filled sites, one active site, and one future site. Past disposal included municipal waste, residual waste, and hazardous waste. It currently accepts only municipal waste. The Schuylkill River surrounds the property on three sides: south, east and west.
Groundwater beneath the facility was contaminated with heavy metals and organic compounds. Groundwater quality has improved over time as disposal areas have been capped to prevent infiltration of water through the waste. Current groundwater monitoring results show no exceedances of drinking water standards (Maximum Contaminant Levels) for any of the contaminants on-site.
Groundwater monitoring will continue under the State Permit and through the required post-closure period.
- Some of the site's key documents of interest are accessible below:
- Corrective Action Statement of Basis [PDF, 387 KB, 11 pages About PDF]
- Environmental Indicator Determination - Human Exposures [PDF, 911 KB, 14 pages About PDF]
- Environmental Indicator Determination -Groundwater Migration [PDF, 830 KB, 14 pages About PDF]
- Documents and reports regarding this facility also can be reviewed in person at these locations:
U.S. EPA Region III
Land & Chemicals Division
1650 Arch Street-11th Floor
Philadelphia, PA 19103
Call for an appointment.
- Submit a FOIA Request
Get instructions on how to submit a FOIA request. Additional fee for requests over 100 pages.
Western Berks Community Landfill
Western Berks Landfill Map
Click on Thumbnail to Enlarge Photo or Map
For more information about EPA’s corrective action webpage, including Environmental Indicators, please visit our site at: www.epa.gov/reg3wcmd/correctiveaction.htm