Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Award Date


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department / School

Civil Engineering


At a 1961 symposium on ground water contamination and later in 1963 at a national conference on solid wastes, concern was shown for the protection of one of our most valuable resources - ground water. It was felt at both conferences that a definite need existed for more research in areas pertaining to the nature and mobility of chemical and biological contaminants leached from refuse disposal areas. Finally, in 1965, because of the interest shown in these problems, Congress passed the Solid Waste Disposal Act which created the Office of Solid Wastes within the Public Health Service. Included in on the national level which was directed toward conserving natural resources. Since 1964 the Civil Engineering Department at South Dakota State University has conducted studies in an effort to determine the effects of refuse disposal on ground water quality. The location for these studies has been the municipal refuse disposal site located just south of Brookings, South Dakota. At this installation the deposited refuse is burned periodically and the resulting combustion products are covered as operation time permits. Because of this type of operation· the immediate area is neither esthetically pleasing nor nuisance free. As a result of investigations conducted at the Brookings disposal site six master of science theses have been written. One might assume that only one investigation would be needed to determine the effect that a disposal site has on the ground water quality; however, with continually changing operational procedures and ground surface conditions at the site, each study has provided ·new and valuable information. Heavy snow fall in the winter of 1968 and the ensuing runoff coupled with rains in the spring of 1969 caused the ground water at the Brookings disposal site to rise to an unusually high level. Since this rise in ground water elevation seemingly brought about direct contact between refuse and ground water, it was felt a study should be conducted to determine what effects this high water table would have on ground water quality. The study presented herein pertains to the influence that the unusually high water level had on the quality of ground water.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Refuse and refuse disposal

Water -- pollution


South Dakota State University Theses



Number of Pages



South Dakota State University