Location: Hydrology and Remote Sensing Laboratory
Project Number: 8042-66000-001-05-S
Project Type: Non-Assistance Cooperative Agreement
Start Date: Sep 1, 2015
End Date: Aug 31, 2020
Examine the use of recycled organic and inorganic materials in lower cost remediation approaches for sites contaminated with persistent organic pollutants.
Research will focus on two contaminated sites at the Beltsville Agricultural Research Center. The first is an area contaminated with the chlorinated insecticides DDT and dieldrin from historical use. Bench scale pot studies will be carried out with representative soils from the site to examine the effectiveness of different organic matter amendments and growing plants on reducing the bioavailability of the pollutants to earthworms. Results of the small scale experiments will be used to design a treatment for the contaminated site. Field scale trials will be carried out as a second phase of this work. The second site is a former landfill where trichloroethene (TCE) contamination has been discovered in groundwater seepage. A potential treatment approach is to install a biowall (permeable reactive barrier) down gradient of the contaminated area. Bench-scale experiments will be conducted that incorporate organic and inorganic materials in a hardwood mulch-based biowall. In addition, we will characterize the effects of the column biowall matrices on microbial community changes. Results of the column microcosm biowall tests will be used to design a site implementation plan using the best remediation biowall matrix treatment at the contaminated site at BARC. Field-scale trials of the most effective materials will be carried out in later stages of this project.