Many major cities have areas which have historically seen significant industrial and manufacturing operations, including oil refineries, fertilizer manufacturing, and coal yards. Untreated storm water, industrial waste water and domestic sewage released to nearby waterbodies from these areas frequently lead to contaminated sediments. Remedial Investigations (RI) allow in-depth study designed to gather the data needed to determine the nature and extent of contamination of a site. They also serve to assess potential risks to human health and the environment. An RI serves as a foundation for evaluating remediation alternatives in a Feasibility Study (FS). A significant part of the RI/FS is focused on interpreting the site data and developing computer models to aide this process.
Contaminated Sediment Management
Pesticides, heavy metals and other toxic substances that are released into the air, land and water are deposited in the sediments that line lakes, rivers estuaries, and harbors. These toxics substances can remain for prolonged periods. In some organisms, the concentration of contaminants can increase if they absorb the substance at a rate faster than that at which it is excreted. This poses significant health risks higher up the food chain. EEMS has extensive proven capability in supporting industry and regulators in developing defensible models of these contaminated waterbodies.
Industrial practices such as oil refineries and chemical plants commonly leave a long-term legacy of contaminated sediments. Sediment remediation is a costly and challenging undertaking. Design of remediation strategy involves methods to excavate and contain sediment hotspots, install permeable barriers, groundwater hydraulic containment systems, and isolate and cap the impacted sediments. 3D modeling of the hydrodynamics, sediment transport and specific contaminants is often required.
Sustaining the viability of a maritime recreational and industrial activity depends upon maintaining navigation channels, including depths of approach channels, and berths at marine terminals and marinas. Natural movement of sediment, as well as human activities such as dredging, are an ongoing engineering concern.