About SURF

SURF is a nonprofit organization dedicated to maximizing the overall environmental, societal, and economic benefits of the site cleanup process by:

  • Advancing the science and application of sustainable remediation

  • Developing best practices

  • Exchanging professional knowledge

  • Providing education and outreach

Our ongoing objective is to provide a forum for representatives of government, industry, consultancy, and academia to parse the means and ends of incorporating societal and economic considerations into environmental cleanup projects. We collaborate, educate, advance, and develop consensus on the application of sustainability concepts throughout the lifecycle of remediation projects, from site investigation to closure. 

Our History

Since its founding, SURF has brought together the best and the brightest in the environmental remediation field, and has led the evolution of sustainable remediation from conceptual discussions to standard operating procedure.

SURF members were the first to consolidate broad-based institutional knowledge into an exploration of sustainable remediation drivers, practices, objectives, and case studies. This groundbreaking White Paper was published in a special edition of the Summer 2009 Remediation Journal.  SURF continued to expand on the topics explored in the White Paper, publishing its Framework for Integrating Sustainability into Remediation ProjectsGuidance for Performing Footprint Analyses and Life-Cycle Assessments, a compendium of metrics, and a call to improve the integration of land remediation and reuse. SURF’s current efforts focus on Groundwater Conservation and Reuse, the international perspective on sustainable remediation, and ways to capture and evaluate the societal benefits of contaminated site cleanup.

From our humble beginnings as a group of just 20 individuals, SURF now regularly communicates with thousands of green and sustainable remediation practitioners, has inspired the creation of over a dozen international sustainable remediation groups, and holds semiannual membership meetings in partnership with the Association for Environmental Health and Sciences Foundation (AEHS) East and West Coast conferences. 


Faced with decades-old treatment programs with high resource needs and no endpoints in sight, SURF was initiated in late 2006 to promote the use of sustainable practices during environmental cleanup activities with the objective of balancing economic viability, conservation of natural resources and biodiversity, and the enhancement of the quality of life in surrounding communities.