What is lechate? Is it hazardous?



  1. 0 Votes

    Leachate refers to liquid in landfills that contains contaminants from the waste.  The liquid can either come from rain or snowfall or it can be liquid that leaked out of the waste.  Since it’s full of toxins and all sorts of contents from the waste, it can be very toxic.  Landfills need to manage the leachate with care to keep it from getting into groundwater.   Once leachate is in groundwater it is very difficult to isolate and clean up.  

  2. 0 Votes

    Lechate is hazardous because it often contains pesticides, heavy metals, phenols, chemical solvents, and biochemical oxygen demand. These things are dangerous if they make their way into drinking water or ecosystems (so basically if they leave the landfill in any way that is not controlled) so landfills employ one or both of two treatment methods, the most common of which is activated sludge. Activated sludge is the process of using microorganism to biodegrade contaminants in the lechate, which is held and aerated in an open tank. The other effective method involves holding the water in a tank and allowing organisms to multiply, forming a layer of biomass which eats away at pollutants and is then separated from the waste water.

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