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Landfill Operators Certification Training

A certified Landfill Operator must be present at a municipal solid waste landfill during all hours of operation. A person interested in obtaining a Landfill Operator certification must take training provided by Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) and pass an examination conducted by TDEC. The details regarding the training and certification requirements can be found in TN Rule 0400-11-01-.12. The following is additional information regarding the certification program:

  • Currently, a basic training class and certification examination are provided by TDEC once a year in the spring (usually in March or April) in the central Tennessee area. In addition, TDEC provides an eight-hour training opportunity each fall for certified landfill operators, typically at Montgomery Bell State Park in Burns, TN.
  • TDEC's landfill operators certification training program consists of three (3) days of classroom instruction (including a field trip) and a final exam on the fourth day. Those landfill operators taking the exam must achieve at least a score of 70 (out of 100 points) to be certified. Topics that are covered during the three (3) days include: Tennessee Solid Waste Management Regulations, Landfill Math, Landfill Plans, Landfill Operations, Surveying, Waste Acceptance/Random Inspections, Groundwater Monitoring, Landfill Gas Management, Erosion Control, Liners & Leachate Collection, Closure & Post Closure, and Compliance Inspections & Recordkeeping.
  • The certification for Landfill Operators is valid for three years. To be recertified, a Landfill Operator must obtain 24 hours of TDEC approved training during this three-year period.
  • There is reciprocity for those Landfill Operators holding SWANA certification. A Tennessee certificate will be issued with the same expiration date as the SWANA certificate.

Continued Training Opportunities for Landfill Operators

TDEC recognizes the following training opportunities for a Certified Landfill Operator to obtain the 24 hours required for re-certification:

  • The second day of the 30 hour LOCT certification course conducted by the Division of Solid Waste Management in the spring each year. This provides 8 hours of credit. 
  • The 8-hour Landfill Operators Continuing Education class for certified landfill operators conducted by the Division of Solid Waste Management each year in October. Register online for the Fall Course now
  • The Solid Waste Sessions held at the Environmental Show of the South each spring. 
  • Tennessee Erosion Prevention and Sediment Control Training and Certification Program (includes Level I certification and Level II certification training classes). Training course information can be obtained from the following website:
  • Level I Recertification - Tennessee Erosion Prevention and Sediment Control Program. Recertification training course information can be obtained on
  • The State Uniform Inspection Training Program for 8-hours of continuing education credit while learning basic skills to help with landfill inspections and the associated regulations.


TDEC is now able to accept online payments for renewing LOCT certification!  Note: Payment does not ensure re-certification. Landfill operators must still reapply for re-certification and complete all 24 hours of required training prior to certification expiration. Completed re-certification applications may be emailed to Jerry Branham at - attach your confirmation of online payment with the re-certification application.  Payments by check or money must still be mailed with a re-certification application.

Please follow the link below to process your payment: