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Republic Services Will Expand Carbon Monoxide Testing At Bridgeton Landfill

Bridgeton Landfill
Véronique LaCapra, St. Louis Public Radio
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Republic Services has agreed to expand the testing for carbon monoxide it does at its landfill in Bridgeton, where a subsurface fire has burned for more than three years.

The company that owns a smoldering landfill in Bridgeton has agreed to perform additional testing for carbon monoxide at the site.

St. Louis County circuit judge Michael Jamison approved the order today. It requires Republic Services to test for the toxic gas at the north end of the landfill, which is close to an adjacent site that contains radioactive material. The company already performs similar testing at the southern end of the landfill, where an underground fire has been burning for more than three years. Attorney General Chris Koster had requested the additional testing, calling it critical to knowing how close the fire is to that radioactive material.

Ed Smith with the Missouri Coalition for the Environment says it’s extremely important for safety reasons to know whether the fire is moving inside the landfill.

"There’s a lot of unknown material in this landfill," he said. "So it’s a concern for the community and for the Missouri Coalition for the Environment that an independent spontaneous smoldering event could start in the north quarry." 

A report including the additional carbon monoxide measurements will be available in February. Judge Jamison will rule in June whether to make the expanded testing permanent.

A spokesman for Republic Services said the company had already agreed to do the testing Jamison has required.

Follow Rachel Lippmann on Twitter: @rlippmann

Rachel is the justice correspondent at St. Louis Public Radio.

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