ABSTRACT In developing countries, illegal dump structures or even some landfills do not include methane collecting systems, even if local environmental laws exist. In this condition, the greenhouse gas escapes to the atmosphere uncontrolled and practical solutions to tackle this problem are not obvious. To make a solution approachable, first-hand reliable data from dump emissions are required as starting point. The methane production is not homogeneous throughout the dump, therefore to estimate its global methane emissions, various representative gas monitoring sites distributed along the dump becomes necessary. This research work presents the measures of biogas emissions collected in the final disposal site located at Morelia (Mexico), along with an evaluation of the organic fraction and confinement time participation on biogas production. Biogas emission data were taken with a portable analyzer from 49 ventilation pipes for 52 weeks. For the composition and degradability analysis of solid wastes, the required samples have been collected from 16 sites. The results show a heterogeneous composition of solid wastes: 38 separate components are present, from those, 19 belong to organic categories and 28 of total components accounts for almost 99% of the waste. The mean biogas concentration detected was: 45.5% CH4, 32.4% CO2, 3.1% O2, and 18.9% balance gas (i.e., N2, CO or H2S). The ANOVA procedure clearly corroborated the influence of composition, biodegradability and time of confinement of solid wastes on the production of methane, despite the deficiencies in the final soil layer cover in these sites.
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