Few things can thwart the best construction projects like botching environmental remediation efforts. Breaking down some of the most notorious public works & civil engineering projects in modern memory reveals that much of what has caused the greatest ire among the local population is a lack of oversight with regard to the worksite & the surrounding environment. This poor oversight subsequently led to a major environmental situation whose impact was, or has continued to be, felt.
What is Environmental Remediation?
The first order of business when it comes to developing a feasible plan for environmental remediation is to understand what it is. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, environmental remediation
“…is the removal of pollution or contaminants from water (both ground water and surface water) and soil. These waste products are removed for the protection of human health, as well as to restore the environment…”
These days, greater attention is being paid to environmental stewardship at all phases in major construction projects. Attention to environmental remediation is punctuated with a detailed plan of action. Steps for this plan include the following:
- Data Collection
- Assessment of Contamination
- Weighing Remediation Methods
- Execution & Continued Assessment/Data Collection
- Confirming Results w/Attention to Continued Sampling & Assessment of Efforts
Environmental Remediation FAQs
There are still important questions to consider. For example:
How achievable is remediation? In truth, remediation is a very doable process with a high success rate, even when dealing with some significant contamination issues. The level of success comes down to who is doing the remediation, experience, and how they approach the situation.
How long does it take? Every major & minor construction job has a projected timeline. These timelines include everything from securing materials & filing proper paperwork with local/state/federal agencies before work starts, all the way to final remediation of the site. Defining the official length of time for remediation is done on a project-to-project basis.
Is the remediation process the same in every case? Simply put, no. While some contamination may be similar between sites, each situation is different, requiring a different approach best suited to handle things.
Who sets the protocols and standards for the process? Remediation protocols & standards are based in local, state, and federal guidelines. However, there is always an attempt to not only meet but exceed noted guidelines with the express goal of ensuring the safety of the community far beyond the end of the project.
When does the process begin? Effective environmental remediation starts during the planning stages of the job, long before anyone breaks ground. There is a constant assessment of the job site, with pauses made to address any issues that arise. Even after the job is over, the remediation process continues.
How much does environmental remediation cost? This is a difficult question to answer as there is no one answer to provide. Not all projects are the same. The unique nature of every individual project makes it as such that remediation costs will vary between projects.
Not Settling for Second Best
Given the massive importance of environmental remediation, perhaps the most important question that bears answering is this — who is best qualified for the job? Working with the right firm means finding a company who is experienced, has a slew of references they can make available at a moment’s notice, and has a wide range of clients in their portfolio. What’s more, it may be of even greater benefit to have an earthworks contractor who is also well-versed in remediation. This way, one team handles all parts of the project. With less irons in the fire, there is less chance for important details to fall by the wayside.
Environmental remediation is critical to the success of any major project. Click here to learn more about how CCI Culberson Engineering & Construction goes about planning & executing remediation efforts with lauded results.