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    Alleviating costs through a risk-based approach in Belgium

    In Belgium, regulatory authorities had been scrutinising the contamination and remediation at a Bruges gas service station since the late 1990s. Irrespective of which soil-remediation technologies were used – soil washing, bioremediation or thermal desorption – the proposed treatment would be costly and eventually force the closure of the active service station. In 2002, after partial remediation, a contractor identified the need for further remediation owing to the potential risks from residual pollution. Subsequently, in 2006, a consultant wrote a remediation action plan that was approved by the Belgian authorities. The consultant’s initial plan outlined excavation followed up by pump and treat as the most efficient methods to produce the required results. However, the remediation was postponed until the end of an environmental permit and the potential renovation of the service station in 2017.

    RSK’s global reach

    Anticipating an invasive and costly project to remediate its service station, the client hired RSK Benelux to review the proposed remediation strategy. Our Belgian assets reviewed the remedial action plan and monitored contamination in anticipation of remediating contaminated soil and groundwater at the service station. After analysing all the data from monitoring, our specialists decided to expand the original monitoring schedule. We increased our team’s scope and undertook additional fieldwork to update the contamination status; we also performed a risk assessment. The fieldwork included updating soil concentrations, installing a new monitoring well and monitoring the natural attenuation parameters. As a special measure, we installed a soil gas measurement well in the forecourt area to strengthen the risk assessment.

    Expertise cuts costs

    As a result of our investigative work, we helped the client to make significant savings. Through our risk-based and cost-efficient approach, we saved the client more than $200,000 by convincing the regulatory authorities that soil remediation was unnecessary on the site. We also concluded the project early at the end of 2014.

    • Location: Belgium
    • Project status: Completed
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