Comprehensive Environmental Investigation at Former Industrial/Petroleum Underground Storage Tank Sites in Long Beach, CA: A Forensic Perspective
Authors: Kim, D; Lu, JC; Park, JS
HERO ID: 2849946
Two industrial sites were investigated based on years of available hydrogeologic information and monitoring . . .
Two industrial sites were investigated based on years of available hydrogeologic information and monitoring data for soil and groundwater. Collected data were forensically evaluated using age-dating and fingerprinting methods. The previous business uses of the project sites were as a gas station, laundry/dry-cleaning service, and car wash with petroleum underground storage tanks (USTs). As a result, these sites were exposed to a number of toxic contaminants at relatively high concentrations. Source control was necessary for successful remediation and the ultimate removal of the remaining compounds from these industrial sites. Although contaminated soil around the source was excavated during the remedial action and the high concentrations of contaminants were reduced, typical groundwater contaminants such as petroleum hydrocarbons as gasoline (TPH-G), benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, xylenes (BTEX), and oxygenates including methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE), diisopropyl ether (DIPE), ethyl tert-butyl ether (ETBE), tert-amyl methyl ether (TAME), and tert-butyl alcohol (TBA) were persistently found at the studied sites around the source points. The plume and concentration of contaminants had changed their shapes and strength for all monitoring periods. Thus, additional source control seems to be a requirement for the complete removal of source contamination, which must be ascertained with groundwater and soil monitoring on a regular time base. For the study sites, monitored natural attenuation was relatively feasible for the long-term plan; however, it did not offer a perfect remediation solution for an ultimate goal because of residual toxic compounds that might have affected the surrounding residential areas at higher concentrations than their health limits. Therefore, as a remediation strategy, the combination of clean-up technology and natural attenuation with monitoring activities are more highly recommended than either clean-up or natural attenuation used separately.