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Technology-Based Solutions for the Environment

Combined Remedies Approach Reduces CVOCs up to 97% in 78 Days

Bioremediation Unlocks Brownfield Redevelopment in Chicago, USA

Project Highlights

  • Downtown Chicago site planned for multi-million dollar redevelopment
  • Manufacturing operations caused CVOC impacts in groundwater of up to 6500 ug/L
  • Redevelopment schedule required effective treatment with timely implementation
  • Monitoring wells indicated up to 97% reduction of CVOCs 78 days post treatment

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Project Summary

This site in downtown Chicago, was impacted by chlorinated solvents used in various historic manufacturing activities. DCE and TCE concentrations were recorded up to 7,440 µg/L in a sand formation over clay. As the site was to be redevelopment as a hotel and sports arena, and any programme delays would be extremely costly, the client needed a quick and permanent remedy to achieve the stringent target levels (of: total VOC MCL 567 µg/L and TCE  MCL 242 µg/L) REGENESIS successfully remediated the groundwater to below target levels within the tight time window.



The designed volumes of PlumeStop, HRC,  and BDI Plus were successfully applied within the defined treatment zones (see map right) during the application event.  A combined volume of 265 m3 of PlumeStop, HRC and BDI Plus was injected via 138 direct push injection points.



78 days post-application, the two key validation wells (AW 3-3 and AW 3-2) observed 80% and 97% reduction in total CVOCs. BDI Plus was used to facilitate the bioaugmentation. As a result, the DHC sp. count and functional genes of the anaerobic metabolic pathways increased significantly from baseline measurements, as determined by QuantArray® analysis. This means that not only contaminant sorption is occurring, but that biodegradation is happening as well. The second and third monitoring round (at 108 and 138 days) confirm the production of breakdown products, indicating that enhanced reductive dechlorination (ERD) is ongoing. Regulatory sign-off is applied for.


What’s Special?

  • Unsupported by PlumeStop, bioremediation would not have been an option for a site with such a tight programme. This project shows that accelerated bioremediation using Plumestop can compete with In Situ Chemical Oxidation on time
  • The execution of this application was unique because of the tight project programme
  • Rapid reduction in groundwater contamination: 80 – 97% from first sampling interval of the total solvents. The concentration levels in all wells are now compliant.

Technology Description

PlumeStop™ Liquid Activated Carbon™ is composed of very fine particles of activated carbon (1-2μm) suspended in water through the use of unique organic polymer dispersion chemistry. Once in the subsurface, the material behaves as a colloidal biomatrix binding to the aquifer matrix, rapidly removing contaminants from groundwater, and expediting permanent contaminant biodegradation.

HRC® is a controlled release, electron donor material, that when hydrated is specifically designed to produce a controlled release of lactic acid. The newly available lactic acid is critical for the production of hydrogen to fuel anaerobic biodegradation processes in soil and groundwater.

Bio-Dechlor INOCULUM® Plus is an enriched natural microbial consortium containing species of Dehalococcoides sp. (DHC). This microbial consortium has since been enriched to increase its ability to rapidly dechlorinate contaminants during in situ bioremediation processes.