Project Merit: Remediation/Waste Management


Safety and Ecology Corp. (SEC; Knoxville, TN; for completing a $2.4 million beryllium decontamination project at DOE's National Environmental Technology Laboratory in Albany, Oregon. SEC performed diverse operations and services to complete the cleanup and the unrestricted release for reuse of 27 laboratories and three high bay areas in 12 buildings. Tasks included operations and services related to environmental safety; occupational health management; air quality; hazardous material and hazardous waste management; sampling, analysis, and monitoring; integrated solid waste management; lead waste management; and demolition. SEC decontaminated 48,500 square feet of surface area, including office materials and laboratory equipment, historical artifacts and various items considered irreplaceable or of extreme value. Decontamination activities were performed utilizing HEPA vacuum, tacky gloves and mats, SIMWyPES towels, wet methods and DeconGel. SEC says that it removed approximately 250 tons of beryllium-contaminated equipment; managed more than 285 cubic yards of beryllium-contaminated waste, and secured the most cost-effective, compliant disposal options. SEC also developed and implemented a successful environmental, health, and safety plan to manage the significant potential exposure hazards. The client expressed high satisfaction with the work, saying "in all my years with the federal government, I can honestly say that this has been the best project I have worked on."

TerraTherm, Inc. for the successful completion of a cleanup project at the U.S. Defense Logistics Agency's former Memphis Depot, an important step in the overall environmental remediation of that Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) site, which has become an engine for economic development in the Memphis area. Under a guaranteed-performance, fixed-price contract to e2M (Denver, CO), TerraTherm designed and implemented its In Situ Thermal Desorption (ISTD) technology to remove a total of approximately 12,500 lbs of contaminants, resulting in greater than 99.99% reduction of chlorinated volatile organic compounds (VOCs) that had been present in high concentrations. The project was awarded the 2009 Secretary of Defense Environmental Award-the only award given this year in the environmental restoration category, according to TerraTherm. Notable features of the project included the simultaneous treatment of eight separate source areas totaling 49,800 cubic yards (yd3); the use of a single, centralized off-gas treatment system; the achievement of near non-detect concentrations in silty clay after 170 days of soil heating; and a turnkey unit cost of only $79/ yd3.

Weston Solutions, Inc. (West Chester, PA; for the safe implementation of a sustainable cleanup solution at G-Street Salvage Yard Superfund Site at Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland. The complex project involved the remediation of industrial chemical contamination while addressing the complications of potential munitions and explosives of concern and chemical warfare materiel. The project was conducted under the exacting safety standards of Army Safety protocol, which included the use of a vapor-containment structure and Level A personal protective equipment. Extensive precautions were taken to safeguard project personnel and the public. Recognizing these measures may alarm those able to view the property, the team regularly communicated with stakeholders, holding open-houses and coordinating with local emergency response organizations. In total, the team worked more than 21,000 hours with no incidents of exposure and no lost-time incidents. The project team also minimized the waste generated by using a comprehensive sampling approach, segregating debris for recycling and reuse-including 15,000 pounds of recovered scrap aluminum-and using surgical excavation techniques to reduce tree removal. In total, the team's approach reduced waste generated by approximately 1,700 yd3, reduced hazardous waste disposed of off site by 700 yd3, and saved 75 trees compared with traditional excavation approaches.

WRScompass (Tampa, FL; for receipt of and ongoing success in implementing the Kissimmee River Restoration project. The project is intended to restore over 40 square miles of river and floodplain ecosystem including 43 miles of meandering river channel and 27,000 acres of wetlands. Restoration efforts will re-establish an environment conducive to the fauna and flora that existed there prior to the channeling efforts in the 1960s. The following are goals and objectives to restore the ecological integrity of the damaged ecosystem: re-establish historic hydrologic conditions; recreate the historical river/floodplain connectivity; recreate the historic mosaic of wetland plant communities; restore the historic biological diversity and functionality. The contract consists of backfilling 19,300 feet of the C-38 canal from the southern end of Avon Park Bombing Range to station 2173+00. Approximately 21,000 feet of new and existing river oxbows are being dredged. An earthen plug is being placed at station 2156+00 where an existing oxbow connects with the C-38 canal. Access to the site required the construction of a temporary road with a minimum crest width of 30 feet and a minimum embankment height of 3.5 feet with 1 to 4 side slopes.