Naturalists are now able to enjoy bird-watching at a formerly abandoned facility site in Delaware after a comprehensive remediation effort.
Black & Veatch partnered with the State of Delaware’s Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) to go beyond their initial cleanup assignment to develop a solution that focuses on long-term sustainability and natural resource management for all living creatures in the Yorklyn Valley region.
For decades, National Vulcanized Fiber (NVF) used zinc to make a stiff paper product at a facility there. Although the plant shut down years ago, the zinc left behind contaminated groundwater.
DNREC’s Site Investigation and Restoration Section (SIRS) contracted with Black & Veatch to help remove the zinc and make the site amenable for redevelopment. At the time, NVF’s consultant had overseen the installation of a pump and treat system that was removing about 8,500 pounds of zinc a year. However, at this rate, it would take an estimated 40 years and cost the state about $14 million to solve the problem.
“Maybe there was a better way,” thought Michael Naughter, Project Manager, Federal Business.