In a landfill gas recovery system, the breakthrough danger is minimized, and the system efficiency is improved, by providing pressure-equalizing low-impedance gas paths such as aggregate-filled symmetry trenches positioned within the landfill and surrounding, at least partially, the primary collection zone. The symmetry trenches may be connected to the system's low-pressure source to serve as secondary collectors. A sensing trench positioned within the landfill along the periphery of the collector's zone of influence can be used to monitor the collector pressure and to automatically maintain it at a safe level. The sensing trench can also serve as a secondary equalizing path in heterogeneous landfills. Hot spots may advantageously be tapped by auxiliary collectors whose pressure level bears a predetermined proportional relationship to the primary collector pressure.