Preliminary examination of a communal landfill site Historical and technical investigation according to the Ordinance on the Remediation of Polluted Sites

The project

Location: Canton of Zurich
Customer: Municipality
Phases: Preliminary examination according to the Ordinance on the Remediation of Polluted Sites (AltlV)
Duration: 2018-2019
Building costs: --


The canton requested the municipality to survey a former municipal landfill site. Ecosens carried out a corresponding preliminary investigation for the municipality in accordance with the Ordinance on the Remediation of Polluted Sites.

The landfill site was filled up before 1940 and no detailed historical information is available. The presumed landfill site is crossed by a stream and is partly covered by a high-rise building. Another part is used for agricultural purposes. The site is furthermore in an area with usable ground water.

A staged technical investigation customised for the site was used to delimit the landfill perimeter and the impact of the landfill on the soil, groundwater and surface water was assessed by targeted sampling. The results of the survey made it clear that the landfill site has no negative impact on the environment. The site could therefore be classified according to the Ordinance on the Remediation of Polluted Sites. The landfill site remains entered in the register of contaminated sites (KbS) but no further steps (neither monitoring nor remediation) are required.


Our services

  • Historical investigation with evaluation of archived documentation
  • Delimitation of the landfill site perimeter with digger probes and sampling of landfill material
  • Sampling and examination of soil suspected of contamination (landfill site cover)
  • Sampling and examination of the stream water
  • Planning and coordination for establishing a groundwater-measuring point, including a drilling application
  • Organisation of groundwater sampling and evaluation of the chemical analyses
  • Communication with the cantonal authorities, compilation of appropriate survey reports


  • Various probing methods and a staged procedure were required
  • Suspicion of effects on all protected resources requires targeted and professional sampling of various media (landfill material, soil, groundwater and stream water)
  • probing in sensitive areas, partially in gardens and near buildings, requires close communication and agreement with all participants (customer, authorities, owners affected by the site)

Project manager:

Michael Rüffer Partner, divisional manager for contaminated sites
Dipl. Phil.II, Geologist, Hydrogeology CHYN +41 44 839 47 81 More

Julia Hunziker Project team member: Contaminated Sites
MSc Environmental Sciences ETH (Federal Institute of Technology) +41 44 839 43 More