Category Archives: News

Landfill Closures Get Complicated

In the early summer of 2013 the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (“NJDEP”) seized control of a Landfill Closure project (former Fenimore landfill) in Roxbury Township being performed by a New Jersey construction contractor. According to the NJDEP, due to the poor management of materials being used by the contractor to cap the former landfill unknowingly creating emission of odorous noxious gases that impacted the surrounding neighborhood. The local Roxbury newspapers report that children at a local elementary school were becoming ill due to these odors.  The NJDEP, responding to a mass outcry from the community, closed the project while it conducted the investigation that subsequently led to its seizure.

The NJDEP found that lapses in design and judgment by the contractor had the operator miss many reporting and construction deadlines. Moreover, many NJDEP-required safeguard controls were never installed and/or constructed.

In October 2014, the property was put to auction. However, nobody was willing to purchase it. Recent changes to the NJDEP’s Landfill Closure Regulations have made closure of former landfills far more complicated and costly, and thus far more risky fgarbage-dump-300x200or prospective purchasers. The regulations, which were in part created in reaction to the problems encountered at the Roxbury project, may significantly hamper landfill closure projects by private entities in the future.  At this time the State has assumed control of the closure and hired a third-party contractor to complete the project. The Town of Roxbury is currently contemplating foreclosure on the property – however, that decision remains controversial at this time.

 

This story highlights the urgency of hiring qualified, licensed and insured environmental professionals when executing complex environmental engineering services. Impact Environmental is proud of its completion and compliance record associated with its many environmental cap construction projects performed in the the tri-state area over the past decade. Welcome to solid ground…

Brownfield as a Public Amenity

Impact Environmental Corporation (IEC) is facilitated backfill of the Hudson County Lincoln Park Landfill at a record pace. As authorized engineering control engineer, IEC finds suitable sources for reuse in the construction of an earthen protective cover, or cap, over the former landfill site. The completion of the restoration project, part of the county’s Lincoln Park, will set the stage for a new golf course and walking trail near the Hackensack River.  Kemper Sports was recently named to manage the construction and operation of the 9 hole, 130 acre golf course that will welcome residents of all ages as well as avid golfers.   Although there is a private course nearby this will be open to the public with clear river views.

“We are replacing a polluted landfill with a
beautiful public amenity.” – Jim Kennelly

The Lincoln Park Brownfield project has completes its final stage – the capping of the former dumping ground/landfill over which the golf course will be built. Anthony Grano of Persistent Construction, working with IEC in the backfill operation, reports that these infill activities went smoothly to completion.  The final impervious cap over which the topsoil and plantings for the recreational course will be placed finished in 2013.

 LincolnPark_aerialsm
Lincoln Park Landfill Closure Area in Yellow

After the environmental project is completed, the county can finish building the course.   Financing for the project comes from a mix of county and state funding. When completed, the county’s profits from the course will be plowed back into golf course operations. Overseen by the Hudson County Improvement Authority (HCIA), the project involves a complex comingling of various agency interests; public and private objectives; restoration and new construction methods, and these complexities all create a difficult setting that works against the fast-tracking of any project. In this case however, IEC has successfully navigated these challenges to ultimately accelerate the process since fill importation to the site began in April of 2011. In completion, more than 1,380,00 tons of fill material have been imported by IEC into the Lincoln Park Brownfield site.  IEC’s mission-driven staff and dedication to customer satisfaction have been an integral part of completing this great asset for the county.

 

The highly-degraded Lincoln Park Brownfield site was once used by the public to dump tires and other trash. The course, when it is completed in 2014, will bring that area back to one of its previous uses as former home of the Lincoln Park Driving Range. One 18-hole course now exists in town, but it is the Liberty National Golf Course is a private membership club, located near Liberty State Park, which cannot serve the broader needs of the county’s diverse population.

“We are replacing a polluted landfill with a beautiful public amenity – a golf course that all our residents can enjoy,” said Jim Kennelly, spokesperson for the County. “This project is an outstanding example of…a near decade-long push to expand parks and open space in Hudson County.”

For more information on Impact Environmental Corp. go to http://www.impactenvironmental.com/.

 

Inspiring The Future

As the pendulum of the economy swings and the world populations grows ever more aware of the environmental issues plaguing our planet, a new industry of environmental sustainability is born.  Today, careers in sustainability look more and more promising to a batch of young people entering higher education.  The promise of the growth of a new industry and the evolution of older industry are very welcoming to a youth facing a world of economic uncertainty.  It is an industry starved for new ideas and approaches to making our lifestyle sustainable.

 

At Hofstra University’s Sustainability Studies Program, students take advantage of their surroundings, in the large suburban landscape of Long Island which is situated outside of one of the most populous metropolitan cities in the world. and look head on at real-life sustainability problems.  Sustainability Studies offer an opportunity to combine engineering, planning and environmental sciences into a diversified understanding of how to solve these issues.  As the world evolves and the population grows we need the best and brightest minds to enter this field and bring us the new solutions.

 

On November 6th, 2013 Hofstra University Career Center is hosting a Sustainability Careers Panel Discussion.  Richard Parrish, CEO if Impact Environmental will be joining that panel to discuss successful careers in the environmental consulting business.  With over 25 years in the industry, Mr. Parrish has experienced all sides of the environmental industry from government regulations, environmental site assessments, environmental engineering on large scale construction projects and Brownfield and mine reclamation. He looks forward to imparting his wisdom and experience to the next generation of talent joining the field.  Impact Environmental has a strong history of being a leader not only within the industry but the surrounding communities.

HofstraSustainabilityCareersPanel-Fall13-Flyer

Transformation

TRANSFORMING…dreams to reality, tragedy to triumph, waste to beauty.

When the twin towers fell, so many of us held our breath. What was next? Had we lost some of our own? Where was the world headed?

honor guardSince the dust settled, over these many years, we have learned to breathe again, and to breathe deep in the face of one crisis after another. As a global community now, we identify with the calamities our brothers and sisters endure, though so far removed, through the miracle of hi-definition recordings and ubiquitous playback. We are confronted daily with the unthinkable – are forced to rethink our paradigm – and we continue to step off into the future daily, sometimes with an uncertainty that is hard to overcome.
But we do.

Impact and Krapf Resurrect a 9.11 Artifact

The late John Krapf, a builder and contractor from the Lehigh Valley area, came up with the idea of turning a number of slabs from the ruined subwalls of the World Trade Center into memorials of hope. Impact Environmental, a New York based environmental remediation company intimately involved with Ground Zero restoration, worked with Mr. Krapf to preserve 11 concrete relics, with a vision to create 11 sculptures destined for 11 US cities coast to coast.

This vision, like so many dreams of restoration since 9-11, came to fruition recently when the first of the 11 planned sculptures was welcomed to its temporary home in Bethlehem, PA. Visitors and close observers of the sculpture will find engravings in binary code (0s and 1s) on the peaks of two concrete aggregate branches forming a victorious “V”, reflecting a triumphant rebirth of the twin towers. The 0s and 1s are a reassembling of the digits for the 10th anniversary and the 11th day of the month.
Christened “Victorii Rebuild”, the sculpture is for now a part of the South Bethlehem Greenway. This is a fitting tribute to the resilience of the families left behind, the vision of one man who has now passed on, and the dedicated work of one company among many who honor the loss of so many vibrant lives with a memorial drawn up from the ruins. Here is the substance of what has passed, standing as a testament for the many who live on.
ott
2/12/2013

View a History in Photos – From Concept to Dedication: For an ebook  by Impact Environmental, email social@impactenvironmental.com.

Impact Paper Recycling Initiative

impact environmental logoImpact Environmental is proud to announce the start of our in-house paper recycling initiative.  For decades Impact Environmental has striven to solve many of the environmental issues of the surrounding area.  Our promise and goal to our clients is to assist them in finding peace of mind, as they are confronted with environmental issues.  It is now time for us to look inward on our own corporate carbon footprint.  Like many active and growing businesses today, Impact Environmentalis caught up in the use of hundreds of reams of paper monthly.  So much of the paper we use is often disregarded, or becomes insignificant in hours if not minutes.  As a company we are making strides to ensure that every piece of paper counts, and the life of that paper does not end up contributing to the problems we clean up every day. 

 

Here is a list of steps we are taking as part of the Impact Environmental Paper Recycling Initiative:

1.       A written company commitment, and reminders to print cautiously.

2.       Duplex printing all reports when possible.

3.       Reuse paper as scrap paper if possible.

4.       A paper and cardboard recycling program (of all non-confidential material) at our company headquarters in Bohemia, NY.

5.      Offering our clients digital copies of environmental reports first and only producing printed reports if requested by the client.

6.       Reuse shipping boxes if possible.

Impact Environmental and all of our employees are committed to making this world a more environmentally sound place.   This is continuing step in a history of actions showing our devotion to our shared environment. Now the work we do inside the company headquarters is working to be as environmentally conscious as the work we are so proud of providing for our clients.  Look for updates on our blog, on the progress and effect of our recycling initiative.

 

Welcome to Solid Ground

Impact Environmental

Corinne Jacoby

6/6/12

Waiting is So Yesterday

Under new New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) mandates, all property owners (Responsible Parties) at contaminated sites should retain a Licensed Site Remediation Professional (LSRP) by May 7, 2012, to move ahead with remediation on their own initiative.

The Licensed Site Remediation Professional (LSRP)

Facing the challenge of managing cleanup at more than 20,000 contaminated sites in New Jersey, the (NJDEP) has dramatically changed the process used to conduct environmental investigations and cleanups.

logo_epasealOn May 7, 2009, Governor Jon Corzine signed the Site Remediation Reform Act, N.J.S.A. 58:10C-1 et seq.[pdf] (“SRRA”) into law. SRRA also amends other statutes such as the Brownfield and Contaminated Sites Act [pdf] and the Spill Compensation and Control Act [pdf]. SRRA, establishes a program for the licensing of Licensed Site Remediation Professionals (“LSRPs”) who will have responsibility for oversight of environmental investigation and cleanup.

Under SRRA, NJDEP approval is no longer required prior to proceeding with remediation. When the Act becomes fully effective in May of 2012 all remediating parties must use the services of a LSRP and must proceed with the clean up of their site without prior NJDEP approval.
The NJDEP is nonetheless required to establish mandatory remediation timeframes for the completion of key phases of site remediation.
Under these new rules, the voluntary cleanup program which utilized Memoranda of Agreement (MOAs), no longer exists. During the transitioning phase leading up to full implementation of this program, all parties who initiated remediation prior to November 3, 2009 will not be required to hire a LSRP to conduct the remediation right away. Remediation of those sites will follow the remediation process with traditional NJDEP oversight. With few exceptions, a remediating party of an existing case must submit an initial Receptor Evaluation form, by March 1, 2012,pursuant to N.J.A.C. 7:26E-1.15. This is an important deadline, as it is required for all cases, and is a “mandatory timeframe”, meaning that NJDEP can strip control of any party’s cleanup of a remediation site if they miss the deadline.

‘Opting-In’ to the LSRP Program

All parties are required to hire a Licensed Site Remediation Professional (LSRP) by May 7, 2012, and to then proceed with the remediation without Department pre-approval. However, a party may choose to opt-in to the LSRP remediation program prior to May 7, 2012. To opt-in the person must complete the LSRP Notification of Retention or Dismissal Form. The person certifying the form may proceed with the remediation upon submittal of the certified form.
Many property owners have already “Opted in”. Currently over 350 cases are registered!

Benefits to Opting in:

·         Remediation is likely to move more quickly because there is no waiting for Department review and approval.
·         Predictable Annual Fees replace traditional oversight costs.
·         More flexibility in the remediation schedule and approach, up to, and including case closure.
·         LSRPs have the knowledge and experience to guide the Responsible Party (RP) through the process.
·         LSRPs approve the dispensation of remediation funding sources and provide financial assurance.
·         DEP established a Technical Consulting process so that the RP get the Department’s guidance on site specific technical issues.
·         The Department’s focus will now be on compliance assistance for cases that choose to opt in, rather than enforcement.

After May 2012 remediating parties for all cases will be required to hire an LSRP. Impact Environmental Consulting is committed to comprehensive environmental services that remain current with these changes. For a complete listing of services, please visit www.impactenvironmental.com.


Robert Ott PMP, LEED GA for EarthEnergyExchange Ltd         2/10/12

Sludge as a Benefit

A Program for Beneficial Reuse*

DEP’s 14 wastewater treatment plants handle an average of 1.3 billion gallons of wastewater every day, which generate approximately 1,200 tons per day of solid byproducts that are also known as biosolids or treated sludge. Environmental Protection Commissioner Carter Strickland today announced the selection of WeCare Organics in response to a Request for Proposals to transport, process, and market biosolids for beneficial reuse.

Under the new proposed contract, WeCare Organics will bring up to 400 tons per day of biosolids to its processing site in rural eastern Pennsylvania where it will be stabilized with lime and made into a product suitable for beneficial reuse. WeCare will use the organic material for mine reclamation projects or sell it as compost to garden centers, nurseries, and landscape supply companies. Once approved, the new five-year contract will start in spring 2012 at a cost of approximately $56 million.

“Our selection today fulfills (the) promise to process sludge in a beneficial way … Converting our sludge from waste to a valuable resource moves us closer to achieving Mayor Bloomberg’s vision for a greener, greater New York.” said Commissioner Strickland.

In June 2010, DEP terminated its contract with the New York Organic Fertilizer Company due to its increasing costs in processing approximately 600 of the 1,200 tons of sludge that the wastewater treatment process produces each day for use as fertilizer. At the time the contract was terminated, it cost approximately $30 million per year. Under the new proposed contract, WeCare Organics, based out of Jordan, NY will collect up to 400 tons a day of biosolids after it has been dewatered at a cost of about $11 million per year — a roughly 50% savings over the NYOFCo contract on a cost per ton of biosolids basis.

Sewage sludge is the bulk of the residual material removed during the wastewater treatment process. Wastewater treatment plants use physical, chemical and biological processes to remove on average more than 90% of the organic material in sewage. Raw sludge is first digested in oxygen-free tanks where it is heated and mixed for several days. The final treated sludge, also known as biosolids, is treated to remove nearly all of the pathogens that can be found in raw sludge.

Impact Environmental Consulting is committed to performing responsive, efficient and comprehensive environmental services that remain current with these changes. For a complete listing of services, please visit www.impactenvironmental.com.

*Extracted from:http://www.nyc.gov/html/dep/html/home/home.shtml

One Step Closer to High-Quality Water

On-Site Stormwater Controls for Construction Projects

DEP Commissioner Strickland is trumpeting the significance of the New Construction Projects Stormwater Rule as crucial to the NYC Green Infrastructure Plan, and particularly as another benchmark in ongoing efforts to improve overall water quality in the region.

“New developments will now be part of the solution in our efforts to have a cleaner and more beautiful harbor,” said Commissioner Strickland.

“In the past, runoff from buildings and pavement added significant volume in our combined sewer system that ultimately discharges a mix of stormwater and sewage directly into the city’s surrounding waterways when it rains. The new stormwater rule requires new construction and major building alterations to capture substantially more runoff through cost-effective measures, providing additional capacity in the combined sewer system. This new rule is the result of years of discussions with real estate, development and environmental stakeholders. It is an integral part of the groundbreaking NYC Green Infrastructure Plan, which proposes a more sustainable and adaptive approach to improve the water quality in New York Harbor for improved development and recreational opportunities, while also saving billions of dollars for our ratepayers.”

Steven Spinola, President of the Real Estate Board of New York, has said “The stormwater rule, as a critical part of the City’s Green Infrastructure Plan that will reap billions in savings over 20 years, will provide great relief to residents and businesses during economically difficult times.”

DEP itself employs nearly 6,000 employees and has a robust capital program with a planned $13.2 billion in investments over the next 10 years. Financial projections have shown these expenditures may be expected to create up to 3,000 construction-related jobs per year over this period.

New York City, like other older urban areas, is largely serviced by a combined sewer system where stormwater and wastewater are carried through a single pipe. During heavy storms, the system can exceed its capacity and must discharge a mix of stormwater and wastewater – called a combined sewer overflow, or CSO – into New York Harbor. Enhancing an already existing requirement, the rule will employ a wide range of on-site stormwater control techniques to all new development, redevelopment and major alterations in combined sewer areas. DEP estimates that the rule will limit stormwater discharge on development lots to approximately 10% of present permitted flow to the combined sewer system using cost-effective detention, infiltration, and recycling techniques such as blue roofs, green roofs, or subsurface gravel beds and stormwater chambers. This rule will lead to on-site control systems that are projected to reduce combined sewer overflows by as much as 800 million gallons over the next 20 years based on historic development trends. No existing homes or developments will be affected by the new rule. The rule delivers a key component of the NYC Green Infrastructure Plan announced by Mayor Bloomberg in 2010. The NYC Green Infrastructure Plan proposed a total investment of $2.4 billion over the next 20 years in green infrastructure to improve harbor water quality by capturing and retaining stormwater runoff before it enters the sewer system. The cost impact of the new standard on a project’s development is estimated to be an additional 0.3% to 1.5% of total construction costs.

The new rule can be viewed at ww.nyc.gov/dep<http://www.nyc.gov/dep

Impact Environmental Consulting is committed to performing responsive, efficient and comprehensive environmental services that remain current with these changes. For a complete listing of services, please visit www.impactenvironmental.com.

Outcomes and Expectations

Regulators who reviewed the performance of closed landfills had a problem in recent years. While the specs for fill and cap materials are sound, in practice the physical outcome often fell far short of expectations.

Guidance documents from June of 2008 (Guidance for Beneficial Use of Soil and Non-Soil Material in the Remediation of Contaminated Sites and Closure of Solid Waste Landfills – June 2008) established meaningful guidelines for the industry, and set realistic methodologies for the characterization of all fill imported into landfill sites by contractors and engineers. Nonetheless, disappointing performance of caps and drainage layers placed into serious question the viability of the guidance. Was this a shortcoming of the guidance, or of oversight?

A stakeholder process initiated in June of 2010 resulted in new guidance that was finalized in August of 2011. A transitional stage was established, to run through May of 2012. Changes to be instituted in May of 2012 will support new rule requirements. So right now we are in that transitional state where adaptations should become a part of every professional’s gameplan. Exactly what we will face in May of 2012 may be subject to speculation, but intelligent planning now is absolute necessary to avoid added expense and costly delays.

The most basic principles of the new fill guidance are summarized as the following:

  • Like-on-Like: Limit types of contamination
  • 75th Percentile: Limit the concentration of contamination to be used as fill
  • Volume Limit: Quantities of fill are limited to the amount needed to complete the remediation

A more comprehensive explanation, in presentation form, may be found by clicking here. The month of May is just around the corner; planning now will make the transition easier and less costly for clients, contractors and engineers alike.

Impact Environmental Consulting is committed to performing responsive, efficient and comprehensive environmental services that remain current with these changes. For a complete listing of services, please visit www.impactenvironmental.com.

Capitalize on Brownfield Tax Incentives

New tax incentives coming out of the Office of Environmental Remediation (OER) will offer developers the opportunity to realize real profits, on properties that once were considered unmanageable. While the NYC Brownfield Incentive Grant Program (BIG) program may be old news, these tax incentives are brand new.
BIG logo smallImpact Environmental can answer all your questions about the program and the process. As a Qualified Vendor, we are ready to assist property owners and developers in the grant application process. The Grant Applications, Cost Reimbursements and Award Limits can be found on the Office of Environmental Remediation’s website at: www.nyc.gov/html/oer/html/big/granttypes.shtml.

The BIG Program requires that all fundable services and activities be performed by a Qualified Vendor registered with the BIG Program Administrator. As a Qualified Vendor since its earliest implementation, Impact Environmental’s experience with the BIG process is unparallelled.  At Impact we also take great pride in our ability to keep our clients’ costs under control, with a “zero tolerance” for overages that other environmental contractors take for granted.

The BIG program is an initiative to spur the cleanup and redevelopment of NYC Brownfields, offering real cost savings and grants to owners and developers throughout the development process, from the earliest stages of information gathering through environmental investigation and cleanup. For a full report about the NYC Brownfield Incentive Grant program, click here, or call our office at 631-269-8800 and speak to our professionals.