Remediation Technology

January 17, 2012

Oily dirt won’t touch pasture

Source:, January 14, 2012
By: Doug Harlow

Company looking for alternative disposal plan for contaminated soil

The C.N. Brown Oil Co. has withdrawn its plans to spread petroleum-contaminated soil on dairy farmland on West Ridge Road.

In an email to several people who have expressed interest in the project, Andrew Flint, an environmental specialist at the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, said the oil company will be exploring other options for disposal or treatment.

Flint said he was informed of the change in plans by geologist Michael White, a consultant for C.N. Brown, and passed it on to residents.

“Mike tells me they are looking elsewhere for different options. They have several,” Flint said Friday.

White is away this week and could not be reached for comment. A call placed to C.N Brown offices in South Paris was not returned Friday.

The original plan was to spread 3,000 cubic yards of contaminated soil on pasture land owned by James Strout Jr. The soil was to have come from a former C.N. Brown gas station site next to the Athens Elementary School.

Last summer the DEP approved the location as an agricultural “landfarm” operation and one not requiring a state permit or a license.

White told the Cornville Planning Board in August that approval was based on site analysis, including distances of the site from well water or surface water. Some residents and planners objected, saying the proposal is not farming, but an industrial and commercial use of land that would be subject to a town ordinance.

Cornville Planning Board member Sam Jencks said Friday that nothing has been submitted to the board concerning the project since the matter first was raised in August.

Cornville resident Larry Pike said the town has to enact local rules and regulations to prevent such a plan in the future.

“I am glad to see that C.N. Brown withdrew this site,” Pike said. “The next step for the residents of the town of Cornville is to protect the town from further consideration as a waste site.”

He recommended that residents ask selectmen to draft an ordinance banning future waste sites there.

Strout, whose father, James Strout Sr. unsuccessfully proposed a low-level nuclear waste dump at the farm in 1991, said he intended to go ahead with his plans as agricultural, regardless of what the Planning Board said. He said the town ordinance couldn’t stop him.

On Friday, Strout said he hadn’t heard of the change of plans by C.N. Brown, but wasn’t disappointed.

“There was no initial investment for me up front, so it didn’t make much difference whether it got completed or not,” Strout said. “They did some road improvement here, so I’m kind of ahead.”

Flint said in August that the soil is mildly or lightly contaminated from leaking gasoline tanks dating back to the mid-1980s. The contaminated soil remains in the ground at the former gas station, he said.

The plan was to spread a 6-inch layer on approximately five acres of land.

Wet weather in the fall prevented the project from starting.…

July 1, 2011

Fixed Base Operator – Jet Fuel

Acknowledgement to Great American Environmental Division

A ruptured fuel hose spilled a few thousand gallons of jet fuel onto the ground at a regional airport. The fuel eventually reached an adjacent river. The contractor responsible for fueling operations paid significant clean-up costs for soil and groundwater as a result of failing to adequately maintain the fueling equipment. Remediation included excavating contaminated soil as well as clean-up of groundwater and surface water. The contractor was also assessed a fine for natural resource damages due to the impact upon the river habitat.…

September 2, 2010

Contaminated Groundwater Found on Construction Site

Acknowledgement to Great American

New construction commenced on a previously undeveloped parcel of land. During excavation and dewatering activities, contaminated groundwater was discovered. The developer was required by State regulatory authorities to collect, test and treat groundwater pumped out during the excavation process. Contaminated soils were also discovered at the site. Construction delays and additional expenses totaling over $1,000,000 were incurred by the developer. It was eventually determined that the contamination had migrated from a nearby manufacturing facility that had gone into bankruptcy several years prior to the development project.…

September 1, 2010

Oil Contaminates Car Dealer, Neighboring Property

Acknowledgment to Great American

An oil water separator for a car service center developed a fracture in one of its underground pipes. Over time, oil seeped from the system into the surrounding soil and groundwater, contaminating both the car dealer’s land and a neighboring property. The extent of the contamination was not realized until an oil sheen was noticed on a nearby stream. An investigation was undertaken and resulted in a contaminated soil and groundwater treatment program. The need to quickly mitigate impacts to the stream required an expedited remediation schedule, further increasing the clean-up costs.…

August 16, 2010

Trichloroethylene Discovered in Soil and Groundwater

Acknowledgement to XL Environmental

An XL insured entered into a transaction to sell an office building to a developer. The property was previously used as a newspaper/printing operation. As the potential buyer of the property, the developer had environmental studies done on the property. During the studies, trichloroethylene (TCE) was discovered in the soil and groundwater at the site.

XL’s environmental claims counsel and a technical consultant collaborated with our insured and their consultant to further investigate the property and prepare a remediation work plan. Remediation costs were estimated at $2,500,000. Remediation activities were monitored by the XL’s environmental claims counsel and a technical consultant, which ultimately led to a successful completion of the remediation below cost estimates.

The insured’s Pollution and Remediation Legal Liability Policy paid $1,500,000 for the costs and expenses associated with the remediation of the property. The sale between our insured and developer was successfully completed.…

August 13, 2010

Waste Treatment Facility Fire Causes Contamination

Acknowledgement to XL Environmental

An explosion and fire occurred at an XL insured waste treatment facility due to a fire in an on-site trailer containing waste drums. The drums contained lab-packed chemicals including solvents. Between 30,000 and 40,000 gallons of fire water was generated in fire extinguishing efforts. The fire water was retained on the site due to a storm water system and containment dikes. There was no off-site migration of the fire water.

XL’s environmental technical consultant worked closely with the insured following the incident. The technical consultant assisted the insured with oversight of the cleanup at the facility. Most of the water and spilled chemicals were contained on concrete and asphalt, so there were only minor soil affects. Approximately 20 cubic yards of waste were generated from superficial scraping of soils and the parking lot. Free products were recontainerized, as well as cleaned and decontaminated.

XL paid over $250,000 under the insured’s Pollution and Remediation Legal Liability Policy for the emergency response and subsequent cleanup of the insured’s facility.…

August 10, 2010

Fertilizer Contamination

Acknowledgement to XL Environmental

Soil sampling activities at an XL insured’s facility indicated low levels of fertilizer constituent contamination over a large percentage of the site. Sampling results were submitted to the state regulatory agency which required a corrective action plan (CAP) be submitted for approval, subsequent site excavation and remediation. A toxic tort lawsuit was also filed by local residents claiming bodily injury from the contamination.

XL’s environmental claims counsel and a technical consultant worked with the insured in monitoring the site investigation and clean-up activities performed by a third party environmental consultant. Groundwater monitoring wells were installed and soil and groundwater sampling for fertilizer and pesticide constituents was performed. Contaminated soil excavation and disposal and groundwater monitoring for natural attenuation of nitrate contamination was also completed.

Local defense counsel was also retained to defend the insured with respect to the toxic tort lawsuit.

The insured’s Pollution and Remediation Legal Liability Policy paid over $750,000 for costs and expenses associated with the investigation, site remediation and resolution of the toxic tort lawsuit.…

August 10, 2010

Accidental Release of Sodium Hydroxide into Drainage Ditches

Acknowledgement to XL Environmental

An XL insured chemical manufacturer received rail cars of sodium hydroxide on its rail spur, located on its property. While performing offloading operations, a large release of sodium hydroxide from a rail car occurred. The release was caused when a 2 inch hose dislodged from its connection coupling. More than 10,000 gallons of sodium hydroxide was released into a gravel area along the rail line. The spill entered drainage ditches on both sides of the rail line.

XL’s environmental claims counsel and a technical consultant worked with our insured to coordinate and manage the clean-up of the pollution release at the insured’s location. XL claims counsel retained a hazmat contractor to remove more than 800 tons of contaminated soil and collect 35,000 gallons of sodium hydroxide water.

The technical consultant worked closely with the insured to ensure that the remediation response was timely, performed properly and the insured’s property was returned to its pre-release condition. As a result of this release, XL paid $1,900,000 under our insured’s Pollution and Remediation Legal Liability Policy
to clean-up this pollution release.…