First use of resin technology for groundwater remediation yields cost savings, enables recovered product for re-use by manufacturer

Confidential manufacturing client Southern U.S.

Project highlights

Client challenge
Nearly 20 years ago, a product manufacturer had a release of ethylene dichloride (EDC) that impacted nearby soil, sediment, surface water, and groundwater. The company needed to control migration of the impacted surface water and groundwater and protect the public from potential exposure. As a first-response action, the manufacturer used granular activated carbon (GAC) as a treatment media for recovered groundwater and surface water. The company initially brought the Haley & Aldrich team in to accelerate the groundwater recovery and remediation process. The client soon realized, however, that Haley & Aldrich's out-of-the-box thinking would begin our relationship as their long-term, trusted advisors.

Our approach
Haley & Aldrich remediation experts had the experience to quickly see that the initial approach – activated carbon adsorption – to remove EDC from the recovered surface water and groundwater was not cost effective. Applying our understanding of the problem, technical expertise, and ability to find novel and efficient solutions, Haley & Aldrich staff identified an existing technology that had not been previously used for environmental remediation – synthetic adsorbent resin.

Synthetic adsorbent resins are commonly used in chemical and beverage processing operations and were well-suited for the application because of their high adsorptive capacity, resistance to fouling, and ability to be regenerated on site using available plant steam. On-site regeneration enabled implementation with no process air emissions, as well as minimal waste generation and permitting requirements.

Haley & Aldrich constructed and operated a field pilot study that illustrated how the synthetic adsorbent resin technology could effectively treat more EDC-impacted water with lower long-term operating costs than the current GAC systems. The field pilot helped to develop the projected operating costs and provided the basis for a full-scale treatment system design.

Value delivered

  • Pioneered first-time use of synthetic adsorbent resin technology in groundwater contaminant clean-up.

  • Provided an innovative solution that limited environmental impact and addressed regulatory concerns.

  • Improved groundwater recovery system that reduced the number of required extraction wells from more than 30 to fewer than 10 and increased contaminant mass removal rate significantly, making remediation more cost effective.

  • Designed an innovative groundwater treatment system to reduce operation and maintenance (O&M) costs.

  • Created an efficient, cost-effective solution that’s operated continuously for over 20 years.

For more information, contact:

Margaret Holt
Denis Conley