Posts Tagged remediation

New Asbestos Guidelines – WA 2020

10 years since their original publication, the WA Guidelines for the Assessment, Remediation and Management of Asbestos-Contaminated Sites are undergoing a 2020 update.

The original guidelines are widely respected for pioneering consistent procedures and protocols to quantify and manage asbestos in soil.  At the time of their publication, most adopted asbestos management standards related to asbestos safety in the workplace, rather than its management as a contaminant in the environment.  The National Environment Protection Council endorsed the Western Australia protocols within the National Environment Protection (Assessment of Site Contamination) Measure 2013 – a testament to the need for a practical and standardised approach to managing asbestos in soil.

The draft guidelines (released in November 2019) contain the following distinct updates:

  • A focus on practicality, for example, acknowledging situations of “small scale or limited surface impact” and management options for low-risk situations, as well as the importance of responsible demolition in preventing asbestos-in-soil contamination at the source.
  • An emphasis on the importance of practitioner competency through appropriate training and experience, and the importance of sound conceptual site models to interpret laboratory results in the context of the broader site investigation.
  • Discussion of limitations of the widely endorsed laboratory method for asbestos trace analysis, Australian Standard AS4964.
  • Potential endorsement of other internationally validated techniques, such as electron microscopy and disposition methods, when accompanied by full justification and approval by relevant regulatory bodies.

Authors of the draft have expressed that intended outcomes for the guidelines are to allow innovation, greater engagement, more effective risk communication and smarter remediation.

Comments and enquiry submissions are due by 6 March 2020 with an estimated mid-year release date.

Looking for practical remediation solutions? Seeking an innovative approach to contamination management? The experienced environmental practitioners at Metech Consulting focus on site-specific, cost-effective solutions to solve contamination challenges and provide our clients with the advice they need.  Contact us with your enquiry here.

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Remediation in Sutherland Shire, NSW

Metech was engaged by a private company who had obtained development consent for a residential development in the Sutherland Shire, NSW subject to compliance with the consent conditions.  A detailed site investigation was required to meet the consent conditions.  Metech undertook a site inspection and the main potential source of contamination was observed as asbestos containing materials in soils.  Metech returned to the site to complete soil sampling adjacent to the potential contamination sources.

Soil sample results indicated the presence of asbestos in soils and remediation was required to ensure the site was suitable for the proposed residential use.  Metech prepared a Remediation Action Plan and undertook remediation of the site in accordance with the Plan.  The final Detailed Site Investigation Report, Remediation Action Plan and Validation Report were submitted to Council to meet the consent conditions.  The Validation Report concluded the site was suitable for the proposed residential land use allowing the client to progress with the re-development of the site.

If you require a  preliminary site investigation and/or detailed site investigation or advice regarding contamination to meet development consent conditions, contact an expert at Metech.

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