Making decisions for effective site remediation and the management of contaminated land can be a challenging process. While a compliance-focus versus development-driven objectives can influence the remediation option chosen, regulatory authorities generally recognise that full clean up and restoration of contaminated land to its original condition is becoming increasingly impracticable. Consequently, a risk-based approach that takes account of the proposed land use and contaminant source-pathway-receptor is the accepted starting point for any remediation action plan.
To make a site ‘suitable for a certain use’ Geo-Logix will identify the most sustainable remediation options that best balance environmental, social and economic elements. Having identified the source and extent of contamination and the sensitivities of the site’s proposed use, we will then apply the following the key principles.
- Protection of human health and the environment by removing unacceptable risks – this is fundamental to any project.
- Consideration of environmental, social and economic factors in relation to specific remediation technologies – this needs to be site specific in order to make a balanced decision for sustainable remediation. That is, an effective site remediation strategy will need to weigh up energy inputs and other impacts to the environment presented by a certain technology such as its cost effectiveness, time factors, operation and maintenance requirements, and whether there are any risk to workers and adjacent landowners. For example chemical oxidisation converts hazardous contaminants to non-hazardous or less toxic compounds, however, while this remediation technology has certain advantages, it can be expensive and generate other undesirable chemical effects. It also poses risks to workers associated with handling the required chemicals which impacts the next principle.
- Safe work practices to protect workers and the community.
- Careful documentation that clearly records assumptions and the remediation decision process leading to the final strategy.
- Stakeholder involvement – stakeholders are identified and considered in the decision making process.
- Sound scientific principles – the remediation strategy needs to be based on relevant and accurate site data.
Geo-Logix’s technical expertise and experience in effective site remediation will ensure the selection of an appropriate technology that seeks to balance environmental benefits and the extent of clean-up in light of the actual risk of contamination and sensitivity of the site’s proposed end use. Contact Ben Pearce at firstname.lastname@example.org Geo-Logix for advice on your project or review our services.