In this presentation originally given at a workshop presented by NGWA, US EPA, and REGENESIS®, Jack Sheldon, Senior Consultant at Antea Group, discussed how environmental liability transfer sites are generally well-suited to combined remedies due to the complexity and timeframes of this project type. In his presentation, he explores an example site in California that highlights the conceptual model development process, the evaluation of a range of remediation technologies, and the selection of technologies for source treatment, plume treatment, and polishing. A recording of this presentation is now available.

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Video Transcript

So notice a theme there, I went from the East Coast to school. Now I live in the Midwest and I do most of my project work on the West Coast now, so I’ve really traversed the country. So what I’m gonna talk about this afternoon is somewhat of a unique topic, but I’m gonna tie in all the themes that we’ve heard earlier today, so keep those in mind. I am a microbiologist and a passionate technology applicator.  So I am gonna spend a little bit of time on the remediation technologies, but the title of my talk is “The Environmental Liability Transfer Sites,” well-suited to combined remedies. And what on earth is an Environmental Liability Transfer Site? Well, let’s take a look.

Okay, this is something that many of you may not have experienced. This is a unique type of project and back in the ’90s, there were several different firms that would buy environmental liability and then attempt to reach closure on those environmental projects. The field has lessened quite a bit. You might imagine it’s a risky business and the risk in those types of businesses can be staggering. But with good information, a lot can be accomplished on these types of projects. So in an Environmental Liability Transfer, there is literally a transfer of the liability to the buyer and an indemnification which protects the original site owner and its employees. There is a commitment to closure and there’s usually some kind of a timeframe associated with all that.

So these sites are not just, “Well, we bought it. Now we can just keep working on it.” It’s five years or it’s ten years, so the clock is ticking. And when the clock is ticking, you know, there’s also a financial sum at risk there. The way these deals are set up, there is a pot of money that’s effectively negotiated for the liability and then there are either milestones or there’s just a direct run to try to close the site and assume those monies. And effectively there’s often a percentage of those monies that are withheld until the final closure is obtained. So you might use up 75% of the money, but that 25% looms out there until the closure is actually reached.