5. Rikers Island Leaks Methane

The parking lot at Rikers Island

Because Rikers Island was built on top of a landfill, it leaks methane as the waste below decomposes over time. Workers and detainees complain about mysterious smoke plumes and the “strong chemical order” that engulfs the site, especially during the summer. To add to mounting issues with air quality, five power plants are also situated less than a mile away from Rikers Island in Queens, and some correction officers even believe the toxic chemicals may be carcinogenic and filed suit in 2011.