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Expertise in Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigations


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Overview section Phase II Ground and Soil Water Investigation

Several steps are involved in this Investigations such as:

  • Historical research site inspection
  • Soil sample collecting, and
  • Testing (and groundwater samples in some cases).

Assessments are frequently broken into two stages:

  • Preliminary evaluation, which includes studying relevant site information on a computer.
  • Uses the information from Phase 1 to conduct a more extensive assessment, which may include testing soils and groundwater for contamination.

To begin quantifying possible threats to individuals, the environment, or buildings, we must sample the subsurface (usually soils and groundwater) at targeted or random places and get quantifiable pollutant concentrations through accredited laboratory examination of the samples.

In summary, a Phase 2 Site investigation entails the following:

  • A sampling of the site through the intrusive site works and subsequent monitoring.
  • Laboratory analysis of site-won samples to produce quantitative measurements of potential pollutants in soils, groundwater etc.
  • Evaluation of the site and laboratory data to aid in the refinement of the fundamental conceptual site model developed for Phase 1, the reduction of uncertainties, and the development of a clear picture of any potentially significant pollutants (if required).

A Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigation, also known as a Phase II Environmental report, is a scientific examination in which geologists dig and sample soil, soil vapour, and groundwater for pollution. A Phase II Investigation is performed as part of environmental due diligence when there are discernible environmental conditions (RECs). As a result, a Phase One ESA is required. The Investigations must also adhere to ASTM Standards under the supervision of a competent geologist.

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Benefits of Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigations

The Phase II Soil and Groundwater investigation aims to assess whether a property has a severe environmental hazard or health issue. The Investigation is intended to determine whether contamination exists. It does not specify the contamination's lateral and vertical extent. As a result, the Phase II Investigation will likely provide insufficient evidence for a corrective action plan or clean-up estimate if contamination is visible. Knowing the whole degree of subsurface pollution is required for a proper clean-up estimate.

As a result, more contamination testing is required following most Phase II Assessment reports.

  • Project implementation costs and time have been reduced.
  • Cost-cutting changes to project design.
  • Enhanced project acceptability.
  • Avoided negative consequences and violations of rules and regulations.
  • Better project performance.
  • Saved money on treatment and clean-up.

Participating in environmental evaluations has the following advantages for local communities:

  • A cleaner local environment (forests, water sources, agricultural potential, recreational potential, aesthetic values, and clean living in urban areas).
  • Improved human health.
  • Conservation of biodiversity.
  • Lower resource consumption.
  • Fewer conflicts regarding natural resource utilisation.
  • Improved community skills, knowledge, and pride.

Difference between Phase I and Phase II Investigation

A Phase I Assessment is the first step in determining whether a location is likely to contain hazardous chemicals. Site records will be checked to see whether the area has previously been utilised for potentially dangerous reasons.

A visual evaluation of the site will also take place to compare it to the original designs. Adjacent properties will also be inspected visually, and interviews will be performed with former property owners, operators, residents, and local government authorities.

If the possibility for subsurface impacts or any RECs is detected or suggested, a Phase II Assessment will be conducted.

A more in-depth evaluation will be done at this stage. Contaminants and hazardous compounds will be examined in soil and water samples taken from the site. The lab results will be compared to local, state, and federal regulatory criteria to determine if the location is safe.

A Phase II Assessment may also entail assessing the biological systems, wetlands, or endangered species to determine whether the area is appropriate for development. It may also include an inspection of a property's interior to assess the presence of lead, mould, or radon.

At its core, the difference between a Phase I and Phase II assessment lies in the scope of the assessment. The purpose of Phase I is to determine how likely it is that a site contains a hazardous substance. In contrast, Phase II does a more thorough investigation to determine if the site is, in fact, contaminated and whether that contamination has the potential to affect the groundwater, environment, or developments.

Trigger point of Phase II Environment Site Assessment

A Phase II ESA is often initiated by finding a Recognized Environment Condition during the Phase I Assessment. A Phase II Assessment will be performed if you have reasonable grounds to suspect contamination or the presence of hazardous substances on the site and need to confirm the level of contamination.

Even before the results of the Phase I Assessment are known, some sites will be subject to a Phase II ESA. Of course, a Phase I Assessment is still required, but any site that previously housed a gas station, dry cleaners, or hazardous chemical storage tanks will be required to complete a Phase II ESA.

Procedure of the Investigation

Following are the main stages and criteria required to accomplish a Phase 2 Environmental Investigation.

Perform a Comprehensive Review of Site-Specific Data and Design a Proper Scope of Investigation

For each Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigations, geologists and engineers must create new scopes of work. Laboratory testing criteria are also site-specific and depend on land usage. For example, chemical analyses performed on soil samples from a fuel station contamination site differ from those performed on a dry cleaner contamination site. Similarly, the number of drilling locations, sample types to gather, and drill rigs to vary by site.

Necessary Permits required for Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigations

Permits for environmental drilling are an everyday need for the Investigation. Most projects necessitate a Well & Drilling Permit. A drilling permit application might increase the cost and time required to complete a Phase II Environmental report. It is a necessary part of the fieldwork process, and failure to comply can result in fines and disciplinary punishment. Finally, most drilling licences must be closed off once the activity is completed. Most agencies demand a closing report that exposes the techniques and results of the contamination testing endeavour to do so. Agencies demand this to ensure that all fieldwork complies with current environmental rules and regulations and that no cross-contamination occurs inside aquifers.

Coordination and implementation of Assessment Fieldwork

The fieldwork tasks must be carefully planned and supervised. Numerous steps are involved in the procedures, which are crucial to the end. The success of Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigation fieldwork is strongly dependent on strong management and a focus on timing, budgets, and results. The primary activities are the preliminary site walks, geophysical surveys, drilling, utility clearance marking and sampling. Following that, borings must be properly abandoned following the environmental drilling permit standards. In addition, the field geologist creates a scaled site map, as well as project notes and photographs, and each of these steps has its own set of criteria and complications that differ from one site to the next. Environmental professionals then begin laboratory analysis, risk assessment, and reporting.

Health and safety are critical components of the environmental engineering industry. Drillers and geologists face various safety concerns on the job. In Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigations, for example, open boreholes and dangerous substances in samples, are all health and safety problems. As a result, before beginning fieldwork, all field staff must evaluate site-specific health and safety plans. This safety programme aims to keep workers safe on the job.

Geophysical Survey & Utility Clearance

Some Phase II Environmental Site Assessments also necessitate a geophysical investigation to determine the extent of underground storage tanks, power wires, and other subsurface anomalies. Prior to sampling, a geophysical survey is performed. It also uses electromagnetic and ground-penetrating radar technology to examine the subsurface. Before drilling, geologists assess the results of geophysical surveys to create the scope of the Phase II Environmental Site Assessment. The quantity, frequency, location, and depths of Phase II ESA samples are determined by data and results.

Compilation of all the results and data to conduct a technical risk assessment

Following the completion of fieldwork, geologists meticulously review the project data. Data consolidation begins with providing the laboratory results and scope of work within the report's tables and text parts. However, the judgement necessitates additional investigation beyond the raw facts. For example, if chemical detections are found in subsurface samples, they must be compared to Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigations screening thresholds. Furthermore, geologists utilise a complex vapour intrusion model to assess the presence of a poisonous vapour migration threat. To accomplish this, the model requires the input of site-specific laboratory analytical data and geological and structural engineering parameters. Finally, the results assist geologists in developing final judgements and suggestions.

Reviewing all Data and Calculations to Confirm the validity of Conclusions and Recommendations

After the investigation is completed, all methodology, findings, and conclusions are Documented in a final Investigations report. Finally, final reports should include data tables and figures that describe the extent of the evaluation. Finally, suggestions are made following conventional environmental engineering, geological practice, and ASTM and EPA rules.

Preparation of Final Report

A concise description of the location, as well as the geological context, must be included in the final investigations report. Furthermore, the report demonstrates each course of action in relation to the overarching goal, techniques, and conclusions. Again, based on the findings and current industry standards, the report makes judgements and recommendations for the site. Finally, for a Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigations report to be valid, it must be certified by a professional geologist.

Phase 2 Environmental Site Assessment Shelf Life

Environmental studies for Phase II can become out of date over time. Particularly if a property continues to use a recognisable environmental condition after the testing date. For example, a gas station underground storage tank could begin leaking years after the Investigation. The Investigation no longer represents the gasoline station in this situation. The shelf-life policies for Phase II ESA reports vary by agency. As a result, consulting with a professional geologist or engineer is always advised.

Low price Assessments

Assessment reports are frequently the result of an unusually low price. Recent case studies have revealed that suspiciously low bids decrease costs expressly to attract the attention of budget-conscious buyers. However, the buyer needs to be aware that the labour scope is usually decreased below industry norms to preserve a profit. A Phase IISoil and Groundwater Investigations is rendered essentially ineffective in this case.

Quality Assurance

The appropriate scope of work is equally crucial as the good quality of work. A low-cost Phase II Investigation typically signals poor service quality. For example, laboratory equipment method detection limitations may need to meet the regulatory agency's minimal significant figures. As a result, considerable contamination may exist, but no detections will be reported in the Assessment report. Such outcomes lead to incorrect conclusions and recommendations and misleading information.

Reliance Letter for Phase II Environmental Reports

Reliance letters for Phase IISoil and Groundwater Investigations allow other parties, such as bankers or investment groups, to legally depend on the Document. The technical findings and conclusions. This must happen while a valid Phase II Assessment Report is in effect. Typically, this letter applies to both Phase I and Phase IIinvestigations. A reliance letter is not an update or change to the technical report. A Phase II Subsurface Investigation reliance letter typically costs 10% of the total project cost.

Concluding, last year may, the gas leak at the LG Polymer Plant in Vizag, which killed and injured many people, was discovered to have been operating without environmental clearances for years; The Western Ghats region, which has been functioning without environmental approvals for years and is already degrading and ecologically fragile, has been flooded with project proposals that would lead to a significant loss of green cover, jeopardising the necessities of life of the River Cauvery in the region- are certain occasions which spontaneity has not prevented.

As it has been the goal and intention of environmental legislation around the world and in India to promote and uphold a balance between development and environmental preservation, it is becoming increasingly important to recognise the importance of environmental impact assessment in achieving the goal of sustainable development.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • The action proposed.
  • The site where the action will take place.
  • Alternatives to carrying out the action.
  • A fair and balanced examination of how each proposal might affect the environment.

An Environmental Site Assessment (ESA) is a report created to evaluate a property's prospective or existing pollution issues.

Where there is a possibility of major negative environmental effects or where the complexity and scale of a planned project, technology, resource allocation, or siting factors cause uncertainty about the precise nature of environmental effects, Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigations is necessary.

A Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigations is commonly performed for real estate transactions to identify the presence of hazardous materials or petroleum products on a property when there are signs of a current release, a previous release, or a significant risk of a release of any hazardous materials or petroleum products into any structures on the property or into the ground, groundwater, or surface water.

Completing a Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigations can be a time-consuming operation. Finally, if sampling is required, the most time-consuming component of the process may be locating a company that can perform the drilling or other methods necessary to gather the samples. Typically, samples are collected within 14 days following being notified that a Phase 2 ESA is required. After the pieces are collected, the analysis will take about seven days and a report will be created from the results. A Phase 2 ESA should take about four weeks. However, with the assistance of Corpbiz, the procedure can be shortened.

The cost of a Phase II Soil and Groundwater Investigations might vary considerably. The price is determined by numerous factors, including:

  • The type of laboratory analysis required
  • Sample collection method involved
  • whether it is required to designate underground utility lines
  • Whether thorough monitoring is required
  • Exploration of the subsurface.
  • Constraints on overhead.

If you have strong reasons to believe there may be contamination or the presence of hazardous materials on the site and need to confirm the level of contamination, a Phase II Investigation will take place.

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