Sustainable Remediation Short Courses

The 2011 International Symposium on Bioremediation and Sustainable Environmental Technologies is June 27-30 in Reno, Nevada.  There will be three training courses related to sustainable remediation on Monday, June 27, before the Symposium program begins. Courses are open to both Symposium registrants and non-registrants.  Visit the conference website for registration information.

Framework and Metrics for Incorporating Sustainability into Remediation Projects

Karin Holland (Haley & Aldrich, Inc.)
Stella Karnis (Canadian National Railway)
Ray Lewis (Sunpro, Inc.)—representing the Sustainable Remediation Forum
Carol Lee Dona (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)
Deborah Taege (The Boeing Company)
Karina Tipton (Brown and Caldwell)
P. Brandt Butler (URS Corporation)

Present a user-friendly sustainable remediation framework and associated metrics that can be applied during the planning and implementation of each phase of remediation. The framework is relevant to sites of varying size and complexity and is complementary to existing regulatory programs. The intended audience includes remediation project managers, consultants, regulators, or anyone interested in integrating sustainability into remediation projects.

During the past few years, significant breakthroughs have occurred in the sustainable remediation field, enabling more and more remediation project teams to effectively incorporate sustainable practices during remedy selection and implementation. However, the methodologies employed for the integration of sustainable practices generally have been inconsistent. This inconsistency has stemmed partly from the lack of a broad-ranging, widely applicable framework, making it difficult for different remediation project teams to evaluate and account for sustainability during their projects and to compare sustainable practices across a range of remediation sites. Substantial benefit is therefore to be gained from a framework that provides a consistent methodology for considering and balancing sustainability efforts throughout the remediation lifecycle. Recognizing the need, the Sustainable Remediation Forum (SURF) has developed a flexible framework that integrates sustainable concepts throughout the remediation project while continuing to provide long-term protection of human health and the environment and achieving public and regulatory acceptance. Quantitative and qualitative metrics have also been developed for use in conjunction with the framework to evaluate actual (or predicted) sustainability impacts associated with a project. Scheduled to be released in spring 2011 as two separate documents, the framework and metrics initiatives are the combined contribution of more than 20 environmental professionals, representing site owners, the Department of Defense, and regulatory agencies. This course will present and discuss the SURF framework and metrics and the value offered to its intended users. The following topics will be addressed in this course: (1) sustainable remediation framework attributes; (2) description of the framework; (3) the importance of preferred end-use for the site in the frame- work; (4) the framework’s approach to evaluation of sustainable practices; (5) revision of the conceptual site model based on the results of the sustainability evaluation; (6) balancing sustainability considerations; (7) integration of the framework within the regulatory framework; (8) identification of key stakeholders; (9) selection of metrics; and (10) documentation of sustainability efforts. Several examples of the use of the framework and associated metrics will be provided during the course to demonstrate how the framework and metrics can effectively be applied to a range of sites and implemented during different phases of remediation.

1. Overview of Framework
2. Attributes of the Framework
3. Description of the Framework
4. Application of the Framework
5. Framework’s Relationship with Published Sustainable Remediation Guidance
6. Selection of Metrics
7. Illustrative Examples
Participants will not need computers during class.

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Other Approaches to Estimating Impacts for Remediation Systems

Paul Favara, PE (CH2M Hill)
Todd Krieger, PE, LCA Certified Professional (DuPont)
Mohit Bhargava (Battelle)
Angela Fisher (General Electric)

This course provides guidance on how to plan and document an LCA and other impact-estimating approaches so that the value of the results can be recognized and reporting can be conveyed clearly. The intended audience includes remediation project managers, consultants, regulators, and anyone interested in performing impact assessments for remediation systems or reviewing such assessments performed by others.

Have you ever wondered how to estimate environmental impacts, or how to apply Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) principles to your remediation project? The course will examine current impact assessment approaches used in the remediation industry, including LCA and impact analyses that do not address the full “cradle-to-grave” life cycle of the remediation system. The primary focus will be on environmental impacts, but social and economic impacts also will be considered. The content is based on guidance developed by the Sustainable Remediation Forum (SURF). This guidance is the compilation of input from more than 30 environmental professionals, representing consulting companies, site owners, the Department of Defense, and regulatory agencies. The following topics will be addressed in this course: (1) setting objectives for the assessment; (2) defining the basis for which comparisons will be made (i.e., the functional unit); (3) defining the boundaries of the assessment to document what is and what is not included in the assessment; (4) establishing the metrics or impact categories that will be estimated for decision making; (5) identifying data for the assessment; (6) completing the assessment computations; (7) conducting sensitivity and uncertainty assessment on results; (8) interpreting the results; and (9) reporting. Several case study examples will be carried through the instruction to demonstrate how the above knowledge can be applied to a range of tools, including SiteWiseTM, SRTTM, SimaPro®, and project-specific spreadsheets. Utilizing the guidance provided in this class will increase stakeholder confidence in sustainability assessment results and provide more complete information for decision making. The guidance will be published in the summer 2011 edition of Remediation Journal. A prepublication version of the guidance will be provided to attendees.

1. Overview of available tools
2. Overview of planning and implementing the sustainability assessment
3. Case study overview of four different tools and how the guidance can be applied to a range of tools
4. Answers to frequently asked questions. What is a Life Cycle Assessment?  Do my results rise to the standard of an LCA? What is the easiest way to access data for my assessments? How do I determine which boundaries are appropriate for my study? What resources (cost and schedule) are needed for the different types of assessments? What should be considered in an effective review of an LCA or impact analysis?
Participants will not need computers during class.

The SRT™ and SiteWise™ Sustainable Remediation Tools

Erica Becvar (U.S. Air Force Center for Engineering and the Environment)
John Claypool (AECOM)
Carol Lee Dona (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)
Sriram Madabhushi (Booz Allen Hamilton)
Robert Nash (U.S. Navy)
Doug Ruppel (AECOM)
Mohit Bhargava and Russell Sirabian, PE, PMP (Battelle)
Tiffany Swann (GSI Environmental, Inc.)

Provide users with the knowledge necessary to apply the tools confidently to site remediation projects, using their understanding of how the tools work and what they calculate. The intended audience includes remedial project managers, consultants, regulators, or anyone interested in either performing sustainability reviews for remediation projects or reviewing sustainability reviews performed by others.

To support green and sustainable remediation (GSR), the U.S. Department of Defense has developed tools that calculate the environmental footprint of remedial alternatives. One such tool is the Sustainable Remediation Tool (SRT™), developed by the U.S. Air Force Center for Engineering and the Environment (AFCEE) and its partners. Another is the SiteWise™ Tool, developed in a collaborative effort by Battelle, the U.S. Navy, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. These tools, which are free and available to the public, calculate similar metrics, including (1) energy consumption, (2) greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, (3) air emissions of criteria pollutants, (4) water consumption, and (5) accident risk. Both tools can be used to support decision-making during the remedy selection process as well as to help optimize planned or existing remedies to reduce the overall environmental footprint. The structure and inputs of the two tools are quite different, the SRT being technology-based and SiteWise being activity-based. Knowledge of both tools allows users to determine which tool best fits their particular situations. Both SRT and SiteWise have been expanded and improved over the past year, and during the course, emphasis will be placed on recent changes made in both tools. Participants will receive detailed training on how to use the tools, best procedures for modeling real-world remedial actions, the assumptions behind the tools, and their respective benefits and limitations. Highlights of case studies where the tools were used will be presented along with trends of the findings. Copies of the SRT (along with the AFCEE-developed Performance-Tracking Tool) and the latest version (Version 2) of the SiteWise software will be distributed to participants at the conclusion of the class.

1. Description of the tools—GSR metrics calculated; structure; basis of calculations
2. Live demonstrations of sustainability evaluations performed with each tool—description of subject sites; developing inputs; inputting data; discussion of outputs
3. Case study highlights—presentation of results; discussion of trends and lessons learned
The live demonstrations will be shown on a projector, but participants are encouraged to bring laptops to the class to enable them to follow along on their own copies of the software.