Removing PCBs from the Largest Sediment Remediation Project in the World

Read about the wreckage from the late 1800s that was uncovered at the site. Source: www.epa.gov. Lower Fox River and Green Bay Site | Region 5 Cleanup Sites
Read about the wreckage from the late 1800s that was uncovered at the site. Source: www.epa.gov. Lower Fox River and Green Bay Site | Region 5 Cleanup Sites

The world’s largest sediment remediation project is currently taking place in northeastern Wisconsin at the Lower Fox River and Green Bay Superfund Site. The project began in 2008 and will ultimately result in the remediation of 7.5 million cubic yards of contaminated sediment.

Advanced Disposal has partnered with the project’s general contractor, Tetra Tech, to provide environmentally-sound waste disposal of approximately 3.4 million cubic yards of sediment contaminated by polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), a toxic substance and probable human carcinogen. From 1954 to 1971, several pulp and paper production facilities released PCBs into the Fox River directly or after passing through the region’s municipal wastewater treatment plants. PCBs have a tendency to sink and adhere to sediments along the river bottom, and the result was a contaminated area stretching for nearly 40 miles from the Lower Fox River through the bay of Green Bay to the point where it enters Lake Michigan. The waterways also contain other contaminants such as dioxins, arsenic, lead, mercury and the pesticide DDT, and the project’s remediation process will address these substances as well.  … read more

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Considerations for Safe Handling and Disposal of PCBs

Advanced_Disposal_Danger_PCBs_3The waste industry’s knowledge of how to properly and safely handle special waste materials, once considered a necessity, has grown along with our understanding of environmental health – a major issue for the waste industry.

Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are among the most important entries in this category. PCBs are man-made chemicals used in many building materials from the late 1920s to 1979, but are now associated with reproductive and cancer risks.

PCBs are present in products like electrical equipment and surface coatings, but are particularly prevalent in caulking, grout, and adhesives. In the U.S., approximately 99 percent of all PCBs were manufactured under the trade names Aroclor, Therminol, and Askarel.

For context on PCB prevalence, consider 46 percent of all U.S. public and private school buildings currently in use were either built or renovated between 1958 and 1971 during the time period PCBs were in use.  … read more

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How will EPA Rule on Coal Ash on Dec. 19th?

Source: www.CatawbaRiverKeeper.org. Riverbend Steam Station Ash Ponds on Mountain Island Lake. Photo by J. Wes Bobbitt. Flight by Southwings.
Source: www.CatawbaRiverKeeper.org. Riverbend Steam Station Ash Ponds on Mountain Island Lake. Photo by J. Wes Bobbitt. Flight by Southwings.

All eyes and ears will be on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on December 19 when the agency is expected to announce final regulations for the handling and disposal of coal ash and coal plant water contained in surface impoundments owned and operated by the power industry.

The Tennessee Valley Authority coal ash spill in 2008, the February spill at the Duke Energy facility in North Carolina, and a recent ruling in a lawsuit has brought increased pressure on the EPA to finalize regulations for coal ash (also known as Coal Combustion Residuals or Coal Combustion Waste).

EPA Options being Considered

Subtitle C Option – Under this option, coal ash would be regulated under Subtitle C of the RCRA act, require conformance to hazardous waste regulations, and provide the EPA with federal oversight.

Subtitle D Option – Under this option, coal ash would be regulated under Subtitle D of the RCRA act as a non-hazardous waste and provide states with the regulatory oversight.

 … read more

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Putting Special Waste to the Test

Advanced_Disposal_Landfill

Sludges, Ash, Foundry Wastes or Soils have you stumped? Are you working on a project and need an initial understanding of what analytical tests may need to be performed?

Various state regulations coupled with specific landfill requirements can make the process confusing. We have tools available to help you through the process. We are developing tables to provide basic parameters for analytical testing of various special wastes that we accept at our landfills. These are basic parameters, and the best practice is to consult with a special waste expert before you contract for any testing. Our experts will consult with you on the necessary tests and will always be mindful to not incur additional analytical costs or project delays.  Because time and money is something we never want to waste!  … read more

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What’s So Special about Special Waste?

Advanced_Disposal_Stones_Throw_LandfillWhy is some waste referred to as “special?” Well, special waste was deemed such back in 1978 under Subtitle C of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed a deferral of hazardous waste requirements for six categories of waste, which they called “special wastes,” and included:

1)      Cement kiln dust
2)     Mining waste
3)     Oil and gas drilling muds and oil production brines
4)     Phosphate rock mining, benefaction and processing waste
5)     Uranium waste
6)     Utility waste (i.e. fossil fuel combustion waste)

Read more about each type of special waste and its regulatory timeline here.

 … read more

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Why…Why Waste?

Advanced_Disposal_Why_WasteWhy Waste is a question relevant to us all and is Advanced Disposal’s challenge to itself and to you, our customers and information seekers, to not waste resources – human, natural or financial – and to find environmental services solutions that make sense while balancing the tripod of financial, environmental and logistical realities.  This debut into the blogosphere is a means of opening conversations about topics relevant to the business of a clean environment.  As the environmental services industry is one ripe with innovation and change, Why Waste is here to serve as a resource for the business owner, project or property manager, resident, city leader, teacher, college student and anyone looking for well thought out  information on managing waste – whether it’s generated by a person, community, business or institution.  … read more

 
 

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