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Phase I and Phase II Environmental Site Assessment for the Vacant Property Located in Gadsden, Alabama

PM Environmental, Inc. was retained to complete a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA) at the Vacant Property located on the Coosa River in downtown Gadsden, Alabama. The property was undeveloped, but the Phase I ESA revealed the potential for landfill use from adjacent properties with development. Based on this unknown situation, a Phase II ESA was initiated.

The Phase II ESA determined that fill material had been introduced, consisting primarily of downed trees with other miscellaneous debris. Chemical analysis of soil samples revealed detectable concentrations of Poly-Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) and Metals, including Arsenic, Chromium, and Lead. None of the PAH concentrations were above initial screening levels (ISLs). The metal concentrations were determined to be within approved background levels for the area. Chemical analysis of groundwater revealed metals, including Arsenic, Chromium, and Lead.  Two of the samples were not within approved background levels.

Once the results of the Phase II ESA were determined, discussions with the City of Gadsden were initiated concerning options.  It was concluded to enroll the property into the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (ADEM) Voluntary Cleanup Program (VCP).  The VCP allows for non-responsible parties to obtain limited liability to on-site impact only.  This limitation can be transferred to future property owners, assuming that any engineering or institutional controls for the impact are maintained.

PM assisted the City of Gadsden through the application process. ADEM approved the plan and a remediation plan is in process to include deed restrictions and industrial controls.