The answer depends on the landfill's age and size, the type of waste present in the landfill, oxygen content, the amount of moisture, and temperature. For example, gas production will increase if the temperature or moisture content increases.
Gas is produced once anaerobic conditions are established within the landfill, it may be several years before the level of production is sufficient to fuel an electricity generator. Production of these gases generally reaches a peak in five to seven years, a landfill can continue to produce gases for more than 50 years.
Later, as the site ages, gas production (as well as the quality of the gas) declines to a point at which power generation is no longer economical. A landfill can generate landfill gas anywhere from 10 – 50 years depending on the size and age of the landfill, although power production may be economically feasible for only 10 to 15 years.
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