Remediation services include oil or chemical spill clean up, restoration of contaminated sites, and hazardous waste management. Common projects include oil collection, asbestos removal, spill vacuuming, brown field rehabilitation, soil recovery and river dredging.
Facility remediation services clean up contaminated sites, buildings, and other operating facilities along with soil and groundwater. Groundwater contamination comes from both point sources and non-point sources. Point sources include landfills, petroleum storage tanks, and accidental spills. Non-point sources include farmland treated with pesticides and fertilizers. A contaminated aquifer may be unsafe for many years.
Remediation services can use technology in innovative ways to remediate groundwater contamination. For example, electrical resistance heating (ERH) brings subsurface moisture to a boil. The steam and vapors carry contaminants to the surface for treatment. Remediation services hire trained personnel and belong to professional associations such as the Association for Environmental Health and Sciences (AEHS). To comply with regulatory requirements, remediation services work with federal, state and/or provincial agencies regarding on-site assessment, cleanup, and other activities. In the United States, environmental remediation services apply their expertise to the development of multi-site agreements (MSA), which coordinate and prioritize environmental cleanup across multiple jurisdictions.
Because standards for groundwater remediation and soil remediation can vary from state to state, AEHS maintains a database of cleanup standards for hydrocarbon-contaminated soils and groundwater. Remediation services that specialize in soil cleanup may follow standards published by Technical Committee 190 (soil quality) from the International Standards Organization (ISO). In the United Kingdom, BS ISO 11074 is the relevant soil quality standard. BS is an acronym for British Standard. In the United States, remediation services follow guidelines established in the "Handbook of Groundwater Protection" and "Cleanup Policies for RCRA Corrective Action". RCRA is an abbreviation for the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, a 1976 law that addresses the treatment, storage and disposal of hazardous waste.