Maine's State-owned Landfills

In 1989, Maine enacted a ban on new commercial solid waste landfills, and authorized the state to site and license new solid waste landfills. (New municipal and privately owned landfills would be permitted subject to certain waste delivery restrictions.) The ban was enacted to allow the state more control over the importation of out-of-state solid waste deliveries. Since this time, the state has licensed and/or acquired 3 solid waste landfills.

Carpenter Ridge

Unorganized Territory , T2 R8. (Approx. 2 miles west of Interstate 95, Exit 227)

  • State purchased 1500 acre site in 1995 from Lincoln Pulp and Paper. LPP planned to pursue licensing of the site as a generator-owned special waste landfill. State/LPP sales agreement reserves capacity for approved waste stream from the mill operations.
  • Licensed as special waste landfill by DEP in 1996. Landfill footprint approximately 35 acres, 1.8 million cubic yards capacity with projected life span of 18 years based on disposal rate of 100,000 cy/yr.
  • $15 million estimated for development build out (1995 estimate)
  • To date, landfill capacity not needed and site remains undeveloped as a potential “safety net” for future development if needed. License is current.

Juniper Ridge Landfill

Old Town and Alton (short section of access road). Interstate 95 Exit 199

  • 2003. Transfer of Georgia Pacific’s West Old Town Landfill to State (SPO) pursuant to Resolve 2003, Ch 93 (121st Legislature). (West Old Town Landfill licensed by DEP in 1993 to accept wastes generated by the Georgia Pacific mill operations). Total site acreage is 780 acres, approximately 68 acres for existing landfill footprint and associated roads and infrastructure to support landfill operations.
  • 2003. SPO issues RFP to solicit bids for contract operations at the landfill. Casella Waste Systems, Inc. awarded contract.
  • 2004. State acquires landfill from Georgia Pacific. State and Casella finalize Operating Services Agreement for landfill operations and management, including a construction and demolition fuel agreement between Casella and Georgia Pacific (Fort James Operating Company) and host community benefit agreements with Old Town and Alton. The term of the Agreement is for 30 years. Casella is responsible for all costs associated with development, operations, and closure/post closure activities, including costs associated with an expansion permit application to be submitted for DEP review by 2007, or at such time Casella determines is reasonable based on disposal volumes and remaining landfill capacity.
  • 2004. State receives DEP approval for vertical increase, increasing landfill disposal capacity from approximately 3 million cubic yards to 10 million cubic yards. At current fill rates (2011/2012 average is 675,000 tons), existing landfill capacity will be reached in 2019.
  • January 2012. State receives DEP approval for Public Benefit Determination to apply for expansion application to develop an additional 9.35 million cubic yards of disposal capacity at JRL.
  • October 2012.State and Casella submit license amendment application to accept municipal solid waste from 13 Maine towns that were previously being handled at the Maine Energy Recovery incinerator in Biddeford, which closed in December 2012. Application decision pending before DEP.

Dolby Landfill

East Millinocket

  • 2011.Transfer of Dolby Landfill from Katahdin Paper Company to State (SPO) pursuant to Resolve 2011, Ch 90.
  • Consists of 3 licensed areas – Dolby I, II, III - total acreage of land transferred to the state was approx 3300 acres. Dolby I/II closed, comprising 90 acres. Dolby III has 75 acre footprint with approx 400,000 cubic yards of remaining licensed capacity.
  • Current waste disposal limited to mill wastes from GNP operations at E Millinocket and Millinocket mills. 2012 waste disposal volumes was approx 2000 cy.
  • September 2011. SPO awards contract to Sevee & Maher Engineers, Inc, Cumberland Center, Maine, to manage Dolby Landfill operations. Contract term and provisions expire June 30, 2014.
  • March 2012. SPO issues RFP for contract operations at Dolby to include all funding for landfill operations and closure/post closure expenses. No formal bids submitted.
  • Calendar Year 2012 operations and maintenance costs were $320,000
  • State initiated project in 2016 to upgrade the existing soil cover system on Dolby III to reduce long-term leachate volumes and treatment costs.  As of 2019, 25 acres are closed with an upgraded cover cost system at a expense of $4MM. An additional $8MM funding will be needed to complete the capping project in two additional phases.
  • Sevee Maher Engineering is under contract for operations, monitoring, and maintenance of the landfill until June 30, 2025 at an annual cost of $420,000.
  • As of 2019, the State and the town share 50/50 of the operating and maintenance costs of the treatment plant.  The town also constructed a new wwtp at a total cost of ~$12MM.


Maine Waste Management Agency established to site and license needed state-wide disposal capacity. Agency eliminated in mid-1990’s and landfill siting/oversight responsibilities transferred to Maine State Planning Office. SPO eliminated in 2011 and state landfill ownership responsibilities transferred to Department of Administrative and Financial Services, Bureau of General Services. State landfill management/oversight duties transferred to Department of Economic and Community Development. PL 2011, Ch 655 (LD 1903).

Waste management planning and recycling responsibilities transferred from SPO to the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). As a result, DEP responsible for completing Annual Waste Generation and Disposal Capacity Report and a Waste Management and Recycling Plan that is updated every 5 years. The next 5-year update of the Waste Management Plan is scheduled for January 2014.

Waste Generation Capacity Report (PDF)