Whenever you “throw something away” it’s taken to the Monterey Peninsula Landfill – the final disposal site for approximately 600,000 tons of municipal solid waste delivered to the facility each year.

This 461-acre site began operating as a sanitary landfill in 1965 and is located in Unincorporated Monterey County north of City of Marina (circa 1975) and south of the Castroville area.  Engineers estimate that it has space for more than 100 years of waste disposal.  Currently, portions of the Landfill have been filled to an elevation of 130 feet, about half the height of the final landfill.

The entire Monterey Peninsula Landfill has been engineered with controls in place to separate waste safely from the environment.  The landfill is composed of modules or cells that are developed one at a time. The 14-acre module most recently developed was completed in June 2021.  The construction of a new module begins with an engineered single composite liner made from a 2-foot-thick layer of clay, covered with a heavy plastic liner. Leachate collection pipes and sand are placed above the liner to catch any liquids draining from the waste – these are recirculated through the landfill. Finally, a 2-foot-thick layer of sand or compost is placed over the sand drainage layer to protect the drainage system and plastic liner from being damaged by heavy machinery and waste materials.