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Construction site with excavation equipment in the background.


Haley & Aldrich works to protect a Michigan community by removing local PFAS contamination source 

3 months

for project completion, including contaminated soil removal, backfilling, and restoration

24,000 tons of waste

removed from site

millions of dollars

saved on incineration costs for the U.S. Air Force


  • Residents of Oscoda, Michigan, had been concerned for years about PFAS contamination at nearby Wurtsmith Air Force Base. The Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy identified that one source was soils beneath a former fire training area where the U.S. Air Force had used PFAS-containing aqueous film-forming foam in training exercises.  
  • To prevent the migration of PFAS into the groundwater, the U.S. Air Force teamed with Haley & Aldrich and Republic Services on a time-critical removal action to excavate and dispose of the PFAS-impacted material. 
  • Given the imminent contamination threat and the high-profile nature of the project, work had to be completed quickly and safely. From previous engagements, our clients knew they could trust Haley & Aldrich to meet those goals while staying on budget.  
  • Our experience managing PFAS contamination also gave us insight into removing PFAS-impacted material while keeping workers safe and preventing further contamination.  
  • To safely accelerate the project, we stockpiled and analyzed soils for levels of PFAS contamination. This segregation strategy protected commercial and residential groundwater sources and minimized the amount of material that needed pretreating before going to Republic’s Michigan waste facility. It also saved the Air Force millions of dollars by eliminating the potential for incineration of the waste.  
  • To dispose of the excavated soil, we coordinated 30 gravel-train semitrucks per day and adapted quickly when additional excavation was required to reach the groundwater table, resulting in the removal of 4,000 additional tons of soil. We also complied with the Federal Aviation Administration’s Foreign Object Debris Program for operating within proximity of an active airstrip. 
  • Ultimately, we disposed of 24,000 tons of PFAS-contaminated soil in 30 days, earning public praise from the Wurtsmith Restoration Board, the project manager, and the local community. 
  • We also restored the site after completing excavation and placing and compacting material from an on-site source to allow for future site activities.  
Construction site with excavation equipment in the background.

“Despite the broader uncertainties around how to manage PFAS waste, we’ve developed the intelligence, sensitivity, and training to keep our workers and our communities safe.”

Jeremy DeGrande, Haley & Aldrich Director of Self-Perform Construction

For more information, contact:

Jeremy DeGrande

Director of Self-Perform Construction

Forrest Paul

General Manager, Construction Business Unit