2002 CPEO Military List Archive

From: joelf@cape.com
Date: 7 Feb 2002 20:41:07 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] [mtpbases] groundwater cleanup

This post comes from the Military Toxic Project listserve:

I know that Steve was just sending along the news, not endorsing "new" technology. However, the report is highly problematic:

(1) Monitored Natural Attenuation (MNA) of TCE was actually tried on a large scale at the landfill plume at the Massachusetts Military Reservation (MMR) despite intense citizen opposition. In March, 2001, EEPA and Massachusetts regulators concluded that it was a complete failure. The MMR plume possessed ideal conditions (as advertised by the Air Force) for TCE degradation: Coming from a landfill, pollution included normal garbage containing a good deal of unoxidized carbon.

The degradation products of TCE include the highly toxic compounds like vinyl chloride and dichloroethene. Unfortunately, natural degradation of these species require opposite conditions: an environment rich in oxygen. You can't get both conditions where you need them in the plume without incredible good fortune.

(2) The idea of increasing the solubility of TCE in water seems pretty stupid since the problem is that TCE has a fair degree of solubility in the first place (or it wouldn't contaminate the water!). Much better to excavate soils and sludges laden with undissolved TCE and remediate using other methods.


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