The County Commissioners are considering hiring a consultant to study moving a stream that could undermine the county's effort to cap Hodges Landfill and could carry pollutants to a larger body of water.
The closed landfill, off Hodges Road in south Carroll, is one of several abandoned dumps that the Maryland Department of the Environment has ordered be properly sealed to avoid land and water contamination.
The stream, which flows near the landfill and feeds Morgan Run, anatural reproductive habitat for trout, could erode a cap on the landfill, said James E. Slater, director of the County Department of Natural Resource Protection, in a meeting with the commissioners.
"It's preventive," said Slater. "It will insure the integrity of the cap."
Streams move naturally over time. Landfills are sealed with a combination of dirt cover and plastic liner.
A hydraulic analysis of the stream would be part of the contract to cover Hodges Landfill, a project estimated at $2 million, said Slater.
Pollutants leaching from the landfill have turned certain segments of the stream orange, said Slater.
In connection with the project, the county might have to install a private ground water collection system to pump and treat the water, he said.
The alternative to moving sections of the stream -- excavating trash from the landfill -- would be more difficult and costly, Slater said.