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Assessment and Remediation of Contaminated Sediments (ARCS) Program

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Averett, Daniel E., Perry, Bret D., Torrey, Elizabeth J., and Miller, Jan A. 1990. Abstract, Summary and Table of Contents to "Review of Removal, Containment, and Treatment Technologies for Remediation of Contaminated Sediment in the Great Lakes," Miscellaneous Paper EL-90-25, US Army Engineer Waterways Experiment Station. Vicksburg, Miss.

by

Danial E. Averett, Bret D. Perry, Elizabeth J. Torrey
Environmental Laboratory
DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY
Waterways Experiment Station
Corps of Engineers
3909 Halls Ferry Road
Vicksburg, Mississippi 39180-6199

and

Jan A. Miller
US Army Engineer Division, North Central
536 South Clark Street
Chicago, Illinois 60605-1592
December 1990
Final Report

Approved for Public Release; Distribution Unlimited

Prepared for US Environmental Protection Agency
Great Lakes National Program Office
230 South Dearborn Street
Chicago, Illinois 60604

Monitored by US Army Engineer Division, North Central
Chicago, Illinois 60605-1592

Review of Removal, Containment and Treat Technologies for Remediation of Contaminated Sediment in the Great Lakes

Contents

CONVERSION FACTORS, NON-SI TO SI (METRIC) UNITS OF MEASUREMENT

PART I: INTRODUCTION
  Background
  Purpose and Scope
  Approach
  Organization of the Report

PART II: FACTORS CONSIDERED IN THE REVIEW OF TECHNOLOGIES
Sediment Characteristics
Environmental Pathways Affected by Remedial Actions
Classification of Technologies
Objectives for Alternative Components
Development of the Screening Process

PART III: ASSESSMENT AND SCREENING OF TECHNOLOGIES
Removal Component
Transport Component
Pretreatment Components
Treatment Component
Disposal Component
Effluent/Leachate Treatment Component
Nonremoval Alternative

PART IV: CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Conclusions
Recommendations

REFERENCES
APPENDIX A: TECHNOLOGY REVIEWS

 

 

ABSTRACT

The Water Quality Act of 1987, which amended the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, authorized a program specifically aimed at contaminated sediment problems in the Great Lakes. Section 118, paragraph (c)(3), directs the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO) to "carry out a 5-year study and demonstration projects relating to the control and removal of toxic pollutants in the Great Lakes, with emphasis on the removal of toxic pollutants from bottom sediments." The Act specified that priority Areas of Concern for implementation of demonstration projects were Saginaw Bay, Michigan; Sheboygan Harbor, Wisconsin; Grand Calumet River, Indiana; Ashtabula River, Ohio; and Buffalo River, New York.

The GLNPO strategy and program to fulfill the expectations of Section 118 has been named "Assessment and Remediation of Contaminated Sediment" (ARCS). One objective for the ARCS program is to evaluate and demonstrate remedial options, including removal, immobilization, and advanced treatment technologies, as well as the "no-action" alternative.

The purpose of this study was to identify technologies that may be feasible for remediating Great Lakes contaminated sediment and that should be considered for demonstration under the ARCS program. Technologies reviewed include those involving removal of contaminated sediment with subsequent transport, treatment, containment, or disposal, and those for nonremoval alternatives, such as in situ treatment or containment of the contaminated sediment. Principal sources of information for the review are technology assessments for management of hazardous waste or contaminated sediment published by the USEPA, the Corps of Engineers, the International Joint Commission Great Lakes Water Quality Board, and others. Published information is supplemented with recent data and experiences from Superfund sites and from work performed by US Army Engineer Districts and Divisions in developing alternatives for management of highly contaminated sediments.

PREFACE

This study was conducted as a part of the Assessment and Remediation of Contaminated Sediment (ARCS) Program developed by the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA), Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO), pursuant to Section 118(c)(3) of the Water Quality Act of 1987. This report was prepared at the US Army Engineer Waterways Experiment Station (WES) in cooperation with the US Army Engineer Division, North Central (NCD), for the GLNPO under an interagency agreement between the USEPA and the US Army Corps of Engineers. The study was conducted between December 1988 and February 1990.

Project manager for the GLNPO was Mr. David Cowgill. Mr. Jan A. Miller was the ARCS program manager for NCD. Dr. Thomas D. Wright was the ARCS program manager for WES. The study was conducted under technical guidance from the ARCS Program's Engineering/Technology Work Group, chaired by Dr. Steve Yaksich, US Army Engineer District, Buffalo, Buffalo, NY.

The report was prepared by Messrs. Daniel E. Averett and Bret D. Perry and Ms. Elizabeth J. Torrey of the Water Supply and Waste Treatment Group (WSWTG), Environmental Engineering Division (EED), Environmental Laboratory (EL), WES, and Mr. Jan A. Miller, NCD. Dr. M. John Cullinane and Mr. Mark Zappi, WSWTG, provided technical review of the report. The report was edited by Ms. Jessica S. Ruff of the WES Information Technology Laboratory.

The study was conducted under the general supervision of Mr. Norman R. Francingues, Jr., Chief, WSWTG; Dr. Raymond L. Montgomery, Chief, EED; and Dr. John Harrison, Chief, EL.

COL Larry B. Fulton, EN, was Commander and Director of WES. Dr. Robert W. Whalin was Technical Director.

This report should be cited as follows:

Averett, Daniel E., Perry, Bret D., Torrey, Elizabeth J., and Miller, Jan A. 1990. "Review of Removal, Containment, and Treatment Technologies for Remediation of Contaminated Sediment in the Great Lakes," Miscellaneous Paper EL-90-25, US Army Engineer Waterways Experiment Station. Vicksburg, MS.

Review of Removal, Containment and Treat Technologies for Remediation of Contaminated Sediment in the Great Lakes

Part I: Introduction

Background

1. Industrial, agricultural, and municipal discharges of pollutants to the Great Lakes over many years have contaminated bottom sediments in the rivers, harbors, and nearshore areas of the Great Lakes. Improved controls for point and nonpoint source discharges have reduced the pollutant loads from these sources, and cleaner waters have been achieved. However, the accumulation of contaminants, particularly toxic substances, in bottom sediments is an important factor in continued impairment of water quality and may contribute to toxic effects in aquatic biota and, potentially, in human receptors. Areas in the Great Lakes system where beneficial uses of the waterways remain seriously impaired have been designated as "areas of concern" (AOCs) by the International Joint Commission (IJC). Public support for control of toxic contaminants in these AOCs has prompted increased attention by Government agencies and environmental organizations toward development of remedial action plans to deal with contaminated sediment.

2. The Water Quality Act of 1987, which amended the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, authorized a program specifically aimed at the contaminated sediment problems in the Great Lakes AOCs. Section 118, paragraph (c)(3), directs the US Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO) to "carry out a 5-year study and demonstration projects relating to the control and removal of toxic pollutants in the Great Lakes, with emphasis on the removal of toxic pollutants from bottom sediments." The Act specified that priority AOCs for implementation of demonstration projects were Saginaw Bay, Michigan; Sheboygan Harbor, Wisconsin; Grand Calumet River, Indiana; Ashtabula River, Ohio; and Buffalo River, New York.

3. The GLNPO strategy and program to fulfill the expectations of Section 118 has been named "Assessment and Remediation of Contaminated Sediment" (ARCS). The following objectives were developed for the ARCS Program (Horvatin 1989):

a. To assess the nature and extent of bottom sediment contamination at US Great Lakes AOCs.

b. To evaluate and demonstrate remedial options including removal, immobilization, and advanced treatment technologies, as well as the "no-action" alternative.

c. To provide guidance to the various levels of government in the United States and Canada in the implementation of Remedial Action Plans (RAPs) for the AOCs in their jurisdictions, as well as direction for future evaluations in other areas, including how to assess the need for action and the options available, and how to select the appropriate remedial measures.

4. The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has been dealing with contaminated sediment problems in the Nation's navigation waterways for many years. Maintenance of adequate depths for these waterways requires periodic dredging to remove sediment deposits. The direct link between shipping and industrial or population centers involves the USACE in contaminated sediment problems. Environmental considerations dictate assessment of appropriate dredging technologies to minimize contaminant mobility during removal and application of contaminant controls during dredged material disposal. The Dredged Material Research Program carried out by the USACE Waterways Experiment Station (WES) in the 1970s identified and evaluated environmental concerns for dredged material disposal. Current research programs, including the Environmental Effects of Dredging Programs and the Improvement of Operations and Maintenance Techniques Program, continue to develop and evaluate techniques and procedures for dredging and dredged material disposal. The USACE has also been involved in recent demonstrations of dredging and dredged material disposal alternatives at the New Bedford Superfund Site and Calumet River.

5. Recognizing the USACE's expertise in dealing with contaminated sediment, the GLNPO and the USACE joined in an interagency agreement (IAG) providing for USACE support in achieving ARCS objectives. The USACE organizations involved in this work are the North Central Division (including the Buffalo, Chicago, and Detroit Districts) and the WES. The IAG outlined an initial program and scope of work consisting of eight elements. Element 5 of this program was entitled "Review of Technical Literature and Databases for Previous Technology Assessments/Demonstrations with Emphasis on Great Lakes Applicability." The results of work performed for program element 5 is the subject of this report.

Purpose and Scope

6. The purpose of this study is to identify technologies that may be feasible for remediating Great Lakes contaminated sediment and that should be considered for demonstrations under the ARCS program. Technologies reviewed include those involving removal of contaminated sediment, with subsequent transport, treatment, containment, or disposal, and those for nonremoval alternatives, such as in situ treatment or containment of the contaminated sediment. Principal sources of information were technology assessments for the management of hazardous waste or contaminated sediment, published by the USEPA, the USACE, the IJC Great Lakes Water Quality Board, and others. Published information is supplemented with recent data and experiences from Superfund sites and from work performed by USACE Districts and Divisions in developing alternatives for management of highly contaminated sediments.

Approach

7. This study is a screening-level assessment of technologies for remediation of contaminated sediments. An extensive list of technologies that have broad applicability for controlling, removing, or destroying contaminants in water, soils, sludges, or sediments was developed. Commonly reported process options for each technology type were considered. Because of the endless variations of process options and the large number of proprietary process options continually under development, an all-inclusive list was not within the scope of this study. Options were selected primarily from the technical literature in lieu of vendor advertisements. The available literature includes an ample number of process options for demonstrations that could be implemented as innovative applications for contaminated sediment and that could be completed within the time and budget of the ARCS program.

8. A brief description of each technology or process option is provided. Technologies were evaluated on the basis of the following factors:

a. State of development.
b. Availability.
c. Effectiveness.
d. Implementability.
e. Cost.

A rating system was developed to select the most promising technologies for demonstrations under the ARCS program. Priority for evaluation under ARCS should go to those technologies with greater potential for application on a full scale. Bench- and/or pilot-scale demonstrations are logical precursors to a full-scale demonstration or full-scale implementation at an AOC.

Organization of the Report

9. Part II of the report provides information about the contaminants present at the selected priority AOCs, describes the classification scheme for the technologies, and defines the rating factors. Part III presents results of the assessment and screening of technology types and process options, including a rating for each process option. Part IV summarizes the recommendations for technologies to be considered for demonstration under the ARCS program. Appendix A briefly describes each process option, discusses status of development and availability, and presents available performance and cost information for each process option considered in the screening process. (Tables and discussions of technology types and process options in the main text and in Appendix A are generally presented in alphabetical order for ease of reference and to avoid an impression of ranking technology types or process options.)

Part IV: Conclusions and Recommendations

Conclusions

139. Process options for remediation of contaminated sediment in the Great Lakes were screened on the basis of status of development, availability, effectiveness, implementability, and costs. Several process options were retained for each technology type, and any of the technology types could be applicable to one or more AOCs. The top-rated process options for the technology types are shown in Figures 3-9. Obviously, there are many possible combinations of process options that can be incorporated into a remedial action plan. Few of these processes have been applied to contaminated sediment on a full scale. Most testing of the treatment technology process options for contaminated sediment have been performed on a bench scale, with limited pilot-scale applications. A database that would allow for design and development of performance and cost data for application of most of these processes to contaminated sediment is not available. Therefore, further testing and evaluation of these process options are justified to advance the technological data gaps that now exist for incorporation of these technologies into remedial action plans for contaminated sediment.

Recommendations

140. The process options identified in Figures 3-9 are recommended as candidates for addressing the objective for the ARCS program of evaluating and demonstrating remedial options for Great Lakes contaminated sediment (see Part I). Additional processes will likely surface during the course of the ARCS program, but these recommendations should provide adequate guidance for initial selection of processes for evaluation and/or demonstration. A strategy for selection of appropriate process options for various types of contaminated sediment situations should be developed. Included in this strategy will be identification of a number of process trains illustrating how the process options can fit together into a remedial action plan.

141. The next step is to plan for and implement demonstrations for the selected process options to the extent of financial and administrative constraints. The GLNPO has defined demonstrations as including bench-, pilot-, or full-scale evaluations or applications of remedial action technologies. USEPA (1988a), in guidance for Superfund projects, described bench- and pilot-scale demonstrations as follows:

a. Bench testing is usually performed in a laboratory using a small volume of material to define the individual parameters, particularly the chemical variables for treatment technologies, of a process option for the waste, in this case contaminated sediment. Laboratory testing on a small volume allows economical evaluation of the effects of a large number of process variables and waste characteristics on performance. "Care must be taken in attempting to predict the performance of full-scale processes on the basis of these tests."

b. Pilot studies are intended to simulate the physical as well as chemical parameters of a full-scale process and are performed on a much larger scale than bench tests. The objective of pilot tests is to "bridge the gap between bench-level analyses and full-scale operation," and they "are intended to more accurately simulate the performance of the full-scale process." Pilot tests are sized to minimize the physical and geometric effects of test equipment on treatment performance and to simulate effects such as mixing, wall effects, generation of residues, etc. The CERCLA guidance suggests that pilot studies are not required for well-developed technologies except when treating a new waste type or matrix that could affect the physical operating characteristics of a treatment unit. Pilot tests are also important where there is a need to evaluate secondary effects of the remedial actions, such as is the case with dredging or air emissions from treatment or disposal processes.

142. The SITE program is designed to accelerate the development, demonstration, and use of new or innovative technologies for cleaning up Superfund sites. Within this overall program, USEPA has identified a Demonstration Program and an Emerging Technologies Program. The Demonstration Program involves demonstration and evaluation of the technology on a field scale to provide engineering and cost data, whereas the Emerging Technologies Program tests and evaluates technologies from bench-scale through pilot-scale to assess basic feasibility of the process.

143. Many of the processes recommended for consideration in this report have been evaluated on a pilot scale for a limited number of sites with contaminated soils, but practically none for contaminated sediment. Material handling problems in field evaluations are often the downfall of promising treatment concepts. The only way to evaluate dredging techniques for removal operations is on a field scale using prototype dredging equipment. The ARCS program should set a goal to proceed to pilot scale with whatever technologies are selected for evaluation. Pilot studies for most of the treatment processes will require initial bench-scale testing to plan and design the pilot study. The pilot study should evaluate as many of the pre- and post-treatment steps as are logistically and economically feasible.

List of Tables

  1. Sediment Chemical and Physical Characteristics
  2. Process Options for the Removal Component
  3. Removal Component - Hydraulic Dredge
  4. Removal Component - Mechanical Dredge
  5. Removal Component - Operational Control
  6. Removal Component - Turbidity Containment
  7. Process Options for the Transport Component
  8. Transport Component - Barge/Scow Control
  9. Transport Component - Hopper Dredge Control
  10. Transport Component - Pipeline Control
  11. Transport Component - Rail Transport
  12. Transport Component - Truck Control
  13. Process Options for the Pretreatment Component
  14. Pretreatment Component - Dewatering
  15. Pretreatment Component - Particle Classification Technologies
  16. Pretreatment Component - Slurry Injection
  17. Process Options for the Treatment Component Types
  18. Treatment Component - Biological Technologies
  19. Treatment Component - Chemical Technologies
  20. Treatment Component - Extraction Technologies
  21. Treatment Component - Immobilization Technologies
  22. Treatment Component - Radiant Energy Technologies
  23. Treatment Component - Thermal Technologies
  24. Process Options for the Disposal Component Technology Types
  25. Disposal Component - Beneficial Use Technologies
  26. Disposal Component - Confined Disposal Technologies
  27. Disposal Component - Open-Water Technologies
  28. Process Options for the Effluent/Leachate Component Technology Types
  29. Effluent/Leachate Component - Suspended Solids Removal Technologies
  30. Effluent/Leachate Component - Metals Removal Technologies
  31. Effluent/Leachate Component - Organic Treatment Technologies
  32. Process Options for the Nonremoval Component Technologies
  33. Nonremoval Component - Containment Technologies
  34. Nonremoval Component - In Situ Treatment Technologies
  35. Nonremoval Component - No Action/Monitoring of Pathways
  36. Nonremoval Component - Restricted Use Technologies

LIST OF FIGURES

  1. Technologies for remediation of contaminated sediment
  2. Removal alternatives for remediation of contaminated sediment
  3. Removal options recommended for evaluation/demonstration by the ARCS program
  4. Transport options recommended for evaluation/demonstration by the ARCS program
  5. Pretreatment options recommended for evaluation/demonstration by the ARCS program
  6. Treatment options recommended for evaluation/demonstration by the ARCS program
  7. Disposal options recommended for evaluation/demonstration by the ARCS program
  8. Effluent/leachate options recommended for evaluation/demonstration by the ARCS program
  9. Nonremoval options recommended for evaluation/demonstration by the ARCS program

 


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