Welcome to the Apex Blog

At Apex, everyone’s insights and experiences matter. Our vast array of scientists, engineers, technical staff, and company leaders, are dedicated to our clients and communities, and we are committed to sharing our insights and experiences. Whether it’s recommendations on how to adjust to regulatory and legislative changes or lessons learned on the job site, you can expect our talented staff to routinely share their knowledge.

As a leading water resources, environmental services, and industrial hygiene firm, our blog aims to educate, encourage thought-provoking discussions, and promote advancement in the industries in which we do business.

 

While providing remediation project oversight for an excavation and stream-channel restoration project at a former manufactured gas plant (MGP) site, Apex had to deal with a utility vault approximately 4 feet deep and accessed by removing a cover for an approximately 3 foot by 3 foot opening.

As a contractor, establishing a solid reputation with regulatory communities is very important to ensure a long and profitable relationship. Apex was enlisted as the contractor of record for two former underground storage tank release sites under the jurisdiction of the Oklahoma Corporation Commission (OCC). Each site had been in various stages of investigation or remediation for a period of approximately 15 years. Previous contractors had been unable to remediate the sites to applicable OCC standards.

In a recent blog post my colleague Michael Wolf penned an article about the upcoming changes to the ASTM E1527 Standard, Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Process. With that being reported, we wanted to take the opportunity to expand on the presence of the ASTM standards and discuss some of the complimentary standards that exist within the ASTM library. As a voting member on the D18 Soil and Rock Committee and the E50 Environmental Assessment, Risk Management and Corrective Action Committee, I have the fortunate and unique perspective of how the ASTM standards are formulated. Each standard is meticulously prepared by committee under the direction of a committee chairperson and then peer reviewed by voting members of that committee. As such, the standards are developed with a vast amount of experience and expertise in the chosen area. With that kind of expertise behind each standard, the standards can be used as an industry guideline for projects that may not be under any type of regulatory scrutiny.

Energy independence for the United States has many in the country very excited. However the need to construct thousands of miles of pipelines to bring shale gas to market has left others concerned for the safety of our environment. What impact could this have on our beautiful landscape and resources?

The environmental consulting community has recently been engaged in extensive discussions regarding the upcoming revisions to ASTM 1527, the industry-standard practice for Phase I Environmental Site Assessments. Blogs, newsletters, e-mail alerts, webinars and discussion boards have been filled with various opinions and viewpoints on the proposed changes, which are currently under review by the EPA to ensure consistency with AAI. There has been a lot of unnecessary anguish, some misinterpretation, much confusion and certainly occasional praise for the proposed changes. Rather than go into detail regarding each of the proposed revisions, as they have been widely discussed elsewhere, the following are my viewpoints and professional opinions on a few of the issues of concern that have been raised on those forums:

Department of Defense (DOD) properties including Formerly Used Defense Sites (FUDS) and portions of active installations are increasingly being transferred to the control of private entities for redevelopment and reuse. Prior to realignment or transfer, DOD typically commissions the preparation of a site wide environmental assessment report, commonly referred to as a Baseline of Environmental Conditions Assessment (BECA) or Environmental Baseline Survey (EBS).

The BECA will summarize:

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