Site Remediation and Clean-up
Performing a thorough site assessment is the first step towards conducting an effective site remediation and clean-up. Environmental site assessment is phase I of site remediation once a contamination is suspected. This preliminary step includes visual inspection of the site, information gathering, and checking the site history. Site assessment is upgraded to phase II if a site is considered to be contaminated. In phase II, borehole soil sampling, groundwater sampling and delineation of contaminants is performed.
If a contamination is confirmed, criteria must be established to oversee the clean-up process to contain the contamination and reduce it to safe and tolerable levels. At this point, a remediation plan is put into place. Pump-and-treat is one of the methods that is vastly used for site remediation and clean-up.
Pump-and-treat involves pumping out contaminated groundwater using a vacuum pump and slowly purifying the extracted groundwater by passing it through a series of vessels that contain materials that absorb the various contaminants from groundwater. Water contaminated with petroleum products is usually decontaminated using activated carbon in granular form. Water may be further processed and treated using chemical reagents and sand filters. Depending on the geology of the region where the groundwater is contained, pump-and-treat may be a good method to quickly reduce high concentrations of pollutants.