Compliance regulations regarding groundwater are as varied as they are complex. Staying on top of what’s required and what has recently changed in the industry can be overwhelming. For almost any size commercial construction project, doing so is critical.
Shield Engineering specializes in providing engineering solutions that comply with local, state, and federal groundwater requirements. From groundwater remediation services to securing proper permitting and planning documentation, our team is experienced in navigating the complicated network of compliance standards for groundwater. Here are five things to know.
- Groundwater Protection is the Driver
Groundwater is an important natural resource, and roughly half of the United States’ population relies on groundwater for its drinking water supply. Therefore, EPA and state environmental regulations promulgated over the years often have groundwater protection as their basis.
- Groundwater Compliance is Overseen by Various Bodies
There’s not necessarily a centralized repository for groundwater compliance standards. The EPA, of course, sets its own federal guidelines for various types of groundwater management programs, but states and even municipalities are free to set their own guidelines, too. There are also a host of non-profit groups such as the Interstate Technology and Regulatory Council with the goal of reducing the barriers to the use of innovative environmental remediation technologies.
- Groundwater Near Hazardous Waste Must be Monitored Differently
Hazardous waste treatment, storage, and/or disposal facilities (TSDF) are subject to their own requirements for stringent groundwater controls. These facilities are required to maintain continuous groundwater monitoring programs designed to detect the leaching of hazardous waste into groundwater. These enhanced regulations are intended to serve both the public and the immediate environment surrounding these kids of facilities.
- Treatment is Often Part of Groundwater Compliance
In cases wherein groundwater is unavoidably contaminated, a conceptual site model is typically required before engineering begins in earnest. Groundwater treatment plans can include everything from operation services to contamination studies to conversion of existing systems to more effective ones. Treatment plans for groundwater are almost always long-term and include a great deal of compliance reporting to various governing bodies.
- Initial Groundwater Studies Always Come First
The first step in remediating contaminated groundwater or complying with existing groundwater regulations is to understand the baseline of constituents of concern in the site subsurface.. It is imperative to carry out extensive sampling and analysis before a plan is put in place; different levels and types of contamination risks carry with them different prescriptions for risk management.
The team at Shield Engineering has decades of experience managing complicated groundwater projects for developers, industry, and government entities. From risk consulting to regulatory compliance, it’s our goal to ensure your operation always meets the requirements of any local, state, and federal environmental laws.
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