Compendium, Groundwater Monitoring Program Services

Posted on June 11, 2015

Client: Compendium of Public and Private Sector Clients

Major Components

  • Groundwater Sampling and Monitoring Services
  • Post-Closure Groundwater Monitoring Programs
  • Monitoring Well Assessment Programs
  • Well Condition and Abandonment Program
  • Investigation and Remediation of Petroleum Contamination

Project Description



D&B Engineers and Architects, P.C. has provided groundwater monitoring program services to numerous private sector clients, municipalities and town agencies and authorities, as well as federal and state agencies located throughout New York State, New Jersey and Connecticut. These services have been conducted at a wide variety of sites, including active and closed landfills, active and abandoned manufacturing facilities, petroleum storage facilities and former manufactured gas plant sites. The firm has performed groundwater monitoring services associated with site characterization projects as well as environmental remediation projects. As part of our larger monitoring programs, D&B will also conduct periodic assessments, typically on an annual basis, to determine the condition of each well and if a well needs repair or replacement. The firm has undertaken monitoring projects that have included as few as three and as many as 1,300 monitoring wells.

Between the firm’s Woodbury, New York, and Syracuse, New York, offices, we have over 12 field geologists and technicians who are highly experienced in the collection of groundwater samples from all types of monitoring well configurations and using all types of sampling protocols and techniques. In addition, our office staff includes five senior geologists and hydrogeologists who are responsible for the management and quality control of our ongoing groundwater monitoring programs. Our staff is also very experienced in the management and evaluation of groundwater data using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) such as ARCView™, EQuIS™ and GIS/Key™. In addition, we have also used state-of-the-art three dimensional (3-D) software applications such as Environmental Visualization Systems (EVS) to graphically display groundwater data.

D&B is experienced in a wide range of groundwater sampling techniques and protocols that are required by various state, federal and local regulatory agencies. While a number of older monitoring programs utilize standard “purge and sample” sampling techniques, the majority of our projects currently utilize low-flow groundwater sampling methods using dedicated bladder pump sampling systems. D&B strongly recommends that our clients employ our low-flow sampling methods using dedicated bladder pump systems due to a number of important advantages over more standard techniques including:

  • Less setup time and less labor intensive than conventional methods.
  • Can be applied to a wide variety of well depths and diameters.
  • Based on completed studies, low-flow bladder pumps are considered to be one of the most effective methods for obtaining samples representative of true groundwater/aquifer conditions.
  • Based on completed studies, low-flow bladder pumps are considered to provide better sample consistency when compared to more conventional methods.
  • Produces significantly less purge water than conventional methods.
  • Does not require the dedication and disposal of pump tubing after each sampling, lowering long-term disposable supply costs.
  • Overall productivity increases due to generally shorter purge times and very limited equipment decontamination.
  • Since the sampling equipment does not require removal from the well during sampling, there is less potential of cross contamination.gwmonitor2

At Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL), the firm maintained and sampled over 700 wells, most of which are equipped with dedicated bladder pump or dedicated submersible pump systems. On smaller short-term projects where dedicated pumps do not provide an economic advantage, D&B generally utilizes portable bladder pump systems, such as the QED Sample Pro™ system.

As part of our groundwater monitoring programs, D&B performs data tabulation, validation and evaluation as part of the preparation of periodic monitoring reports that are required by various regulatory agencies. As discussed above, D&B is experienced in using data management software packages such as EQuIS™, GIS/Key™ and ARCView™, to manage and graphically depict groundwater data in our monitoring reports. For a number of projects, D&B evaluates generated groundwater data to assess the rate of natural attenuation that is occurring within an organic groundwater plume. In addition, D&B employs a number of geochemical analytical techniques to determine the migration or attenuation of inorganic groundwater plumes typically associated with landfills.

As part of the periodic reporting process, the firm will also review the generated groundwater data to determine if regulatory cleanup goals have been met and if the monitoring program can be discontinued or reduced in the total number of wells sampled and/or the frequency of sampling. For example, based on our extensive experience, the firm was contracted by BNL to prepare a Data Quality Objective (DQO) analysis for each of their 26 groundwater monitoring programs. This analysis included evaluation of each program with respect to the number of wells sampled, frequency of sampling and analytical parameters. Based on this evaluation, recommendations were made regarding revisions to the monitoring programs that were warranted to meet the DQOs established for each program. While an increase in monitoring scope was recommended for a few programs, a reduction in scope was warranted for most programs, resulting in substantial cost savings for BNL.

The following is a list of representative clients for which the firm has provided groundwater monitoring services, as well as a brief description of the services provided:

NassauCounty_NewLogoNassau County’s Fireman’s Training Center Evaluation of
Groundwater Treatment Status and Achievement of System Termination Criteria

Since 1999, the Nassau County Department of Public Works (the County) has been operating a groundwater treatment system for the Fireman’s Training Center (FTC), located in Old Bethpage, New York. D&B was retained by the County to evaluate the status of groundwater treatment at the FTC, including a review of the termination criteria for the remedial system as outlined in the September 1994 Remediation Monitoring Plan and an evaluation of the associated groundwater monitoring database. The objective of this assignment was to determine if the original termination criteria for the groundwater treatment system had been achieved and to provide recommendations to the County with regard to the future operation of the system.

The FTC is located on a 12-acre site along Winding Road near Round Swamp Road in Old Bethpage, New York. The site has been used since 1960 for firefighting training exercises conducted in open burn areas and Figure 3-2building mock-ups. Between 1970 and 1980, waste solvents, in addition to fuel oil and gasoline, were accepted at the site for use in training. Since 1980, training has been conducted using only fuel oil and gasoline. Groundwater contamination at the FTC primarily consisted of various volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and, to a lesser degree, semivolatile organic compounds (SVOCs) in the dissolved phase. Additionally, significant amounts of floating “petroleum product” or light nonaqueous phase liquid (LNAPL) were observed on the groundwater during the early stages of the project. A VOC plume emanated from the FTC in a southeasterly direction along with the natural flow of groundwater, principally containing benzene, c-1,2-dichloroethene (1,2-DCE), tetrachloroethene (PCE) and trichloroethene (TCE).

To evaluate the status of groundwater treatment at the FTC, D&B completed the following tasks:

  • Review of Existing Environmental Reports and Data
  • Review of FTC Remediation Monitoring Plan
  • Evaluation of System Termination Criteria

A comparison of over 10 years of groundwater monitoring data to Cleanup Objectives and a zero slope condition analysis for wells that did not meet the groundwater cleanup objectives was conducted. A report was prepared that presented conclusions based on D&B’s evaluation of the groundwater data, and recommendations regarding the future of groundwater treatment. Based on the results of this analysis, D&B was able to provide the County with a technical basis for petitioning the NYSDEC to terminate the operation of their groundwater treatment system.

OysterBay_LogoTown of Oyster Bay Groundwater Monitoring of the Old Bethpage Landfill Clean Fill Area

The Town of Oyster Bay retained D&B to conduct an on-going groundwater monitoring program of the Clean Fill Area at the Old Bethpage Landfill. This Town owned landfill is a 72 acre former federal and state superfund listed landfill that has been fully capped. The Clean Fill Area is the area adjacent to the Old Bethpage Landfill that was originally to be constructed as the next phase of the MSW landfill operations plan. The Old Bethpage Landfill was closed prior to beginning operations in this new area and this area was then filled with clean fill. D&B has been tasked with conducting a quarterly monitoring program of the three wells to evaluate potential groundwater impacts associated with the Clean Fill Area. The sampling activities are conducted in conformance with the “Protocols for Sampling Groundwater Under the Old Bethpage Solid Waste Disposal Complex Remedial Action Plan.”

gwmonitor5Brookhaven National Laboratory

For 10 years, D&B provided site-wide groundwater sampling and monitoring services for BNL. As part of this program, the firm sampled over 700 monitoring wells on a quarterly, semiannual or annual basis, generally using low-flow sampling techniques. In addition, D&B collected water level information from more than 1,000 wells on a quarterly basis in order to provide the data necessary to develop groundwater contour maps for the 5,265-acre facility. D&B’s groundwater monitoring program also included the assessment of the monitoring wells included in the sampling program on a regular basis. The frequency of assessment ranged from monthly to annually, depending on the sampling frequency for the well. The BNL site contact was provided information on a daily basis to document the need for well rehabilitation.

NationalGrid_LogoNational Grid

As part of the investigation of six former Manufactured Gas Plant (MGP) sites located in Suffolk and Nassau Counties, Long Island, New York, the firm installed approximately 180 monitoring wells for National Grid (formerly KeySpan Corporation). As part of this large investigation program, D&B routinely sampled the 180 newly installed monitoring wells along with 96 existing monitoring wells. However, prior to incorporating the existing wells into the monitoring program, the firm undertook the assessment of the existing monitoring wells prior site characterization efforts. In some cases, the wells were installed over 15 years ago and within street right of ways. As a result, the firm needed to use well survey coordinates as well as magnetometers to locate a number of the wells before the condition of each could be assessed. Due to the fact that the majority of the existing wells had not been sampled in over 10 years, all wells that were located and determined to be in a usable condition were redeveloped prior to initiating the groundwater sampling program. All generated groundwater data was imported into a GIS/Key™ database by D&B and data summary tables were generated along with various graphics depicting the extent of various groundwater plumes.

ConEd_LogoConsolidated Edison Company of New York, Inc.

The firm was retained by Consolidated Edison of New York, Inc. to investigate and remediate petroleum contamination at the Con Edison Hudson Avenue Generating Station, a steam and electric generating plant located in Brooklyn, New York. As part of this project, the firm has installed nearly 40 new on-site monitoring wells and performed an assessment of 30 existing groundwater monitoring wells to determine their suitability for use in the planned site characterization phase of the project. Due to the fact that the majority of the existing wells had not been sampled for a number of years, all wells that were located and determined to be in a usable condition were redeveloped prior to use in future investigations. As part of a routine monitoring program, D&B sampled a total of 47 monitoring wells. The analysis of groundwater samples included natural attenuation parameters in order to determine the rate of plume degradation. All data was input into a GIS/Key™ database.

IRRA_LogoIslip Resource Recovery Agency

Blydenburgh Road Landfill Complex

As part of the Post Closure Groundwater Monitoring Program for the municipal solid waste landfill, a total of 26 monitoring wells are sampled on a quarterly basis. As part of each sample round, D&B performs an assessment of the condition of each well. All generated data are input into a computer database which is used to generate data summary tables, as well as groundwater contour maps. All generated data and graphics are submitted to the USEPA and NYSDEC in quarterly monitoring reports. A separate report including a tabulated summary of the well condition and recommendations regarding the need for well rehabilitation, if required, is also prepared on a quarterly basis.

Sonia Road Landfillgwmonitor3

As part of the Post Closure Groundwater Monitoring Program for the landfill, a total of 23 monitoring wells were sampled. As part of each sample round, D&B performed an assessment of the condition of each well. All generated data was input into an ARCView™ database which was used to generate data summary tables, as well as graphical displays of the chemical data and groundwater contour maps. In addition, D&B performed an analysis of a number of “leachate indicator” parameters to assess the migration and attenuation of the landfill leachate plume. All generated data and graphics were submitted to the NYSDEC and USEPA in quarterly monitoring reports. These reports also included a tabulated summary of the condition of the monitoring wells and recommendations regarding the need for rehabilitation, if required.

gwmonitor6Town of Brookhaven – Waste Management Facility

As part of the groundwater monitoring program for this landfill, a total of 27 monitoring wells are sampled on a semiannual basis. As part of each sample round, D&B performs an assessment of the condition of each well. All generated data is input into an GIS/Key™ database which is used to generate data summary tables as well as graphical displays of the chemical data and groundwater contour maps. For each sampling event, a detailed analysis is performed on the concentration data to identify any statistically significant increasing trends as compared to the historical record. In addition, D&B performs a geochemical analysis of a number of “leachate indicator” parameters, including the generation of Piper and Stiff Diagrams to assess the migration and attenuation of the landfill leachate plume. All generated data and graphics are submitted to the NYSDEC in semiannual monitoring reports.

In addition to the routine sampling, the Town asked D&B to investigate the downgradient extent of the leachate-contaminated groundwater plume generated by the landfill prior to capping. The delineation of the leachate plume involved re-establishing the existing downgradient monitoring well network of over 100 wells, rehabilitation and sampling of over 20 wells, and the completion of 22 vertical profile groundwater probes. D&B also installed 16 additional monitoring wells for long-term monitoring of the plume.

NYCDEP_LogoNYCDEP – Rodman’s Neck, Bronx, New York

As part of an ongoing soil remediation and operation and maintenance program at the New York City Police Department’s Outdoor Firing Range, located in Rodman’s Neck, New York, D&B installed 26 on-site groundwater monitoring wells. D&B conducts biannual groundwater monitoring at up to 33 on-site monitoring wells. All samples are collected using portable bladder pump systems and low flow groundwater sampling techniques, which significantly improve the accuracy of dissolved lead measurements in groundwater. The groundwater results are compared to site-specific cleanup goals and are summarized in a biannual monitoring report that also includes soil data associated with the ongoing lead remediation operations.

NYSDECNew York State Department of Environmental Conservation

McKenna Landfill, Town of Albion, New York

As part of the operation and maintenance of the McKenna Landfill inactive hazardous waste disposal site, 12 monitoring wells and four piezometers were installed to provide a long-term groundwater monitoring well network for the site. D&B performed quarterly groundwater sampling of the groundwater monitoring well network. In addition, surface water and leachate samples were collected on a quarterly basis. All generated data was input into data summary tables as well as graphical displays of the chemical data and groundwater contour maps. All generated data and graphics were submitted to the NYSDEC in annual operations and monitoring reports. These reports also included a summary of the well conditions and recommendations regarding the need for well rehabilitation, if required.

New Cassel Industrial Area, Hempstead, New York

D&B was tasked by the NYSDEC to install and sample a monitoring well network to assess and track several commingled contaminant plumes (including chlorinated volatile organics) migrating from the New Cassel Industrial Area (NCIA), a New York State Superfund Site. The wells were sampled on a quarterly basis for 4 years. For each sampling event, the data were validated and a report documenting the sampling activities and analytical results was prepared.

Confidential Client – Well Condition and Abandonment Programgwmonitor4

D&B was retained by a confidential client to perform an annual assessment of approximately 630 monitoring wells associated with their 1,000-acre facility, located in upstate New York. The scope of work included sounding each well, assessing the condition of dedicated pump systems and assessing the condition of protective well caps and covers. The findings were provided to the client in an annual report. In addition, the firm completed the abandonment of seven existing monitoring wells in accordance with New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) protocols. The wells needed to be abandoned due to the fact that the wells were located in the future footprint of a building expansion. As part of the project, preliminary well inspections were completed and documented on specific well decommissioning forms. The seven monitoring wells were abandoned in accordance with the NYSDEC-approved work plan which incorporated the procedures outlined in Section 2.0 of the NYSDEC document entitled, “Groundwater Monitoring Well Decommissioning Procedures,” dated April 2003. The casing pulling and overdrilling methods were successfully utilized to abandon all the wells. Upon completion of the well abandonment activities, a letter report was submitted to the NYSDEC documenting the successful abandonment of all seven wells.

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