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Case Studies

Cleaning up Radioactive Sands and Hexavalent Chromium on the Gold Coast

February 12, 2024
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EESI was tasked with assessing and remediating a 3.4-hectare contaminated site on the Gold Coast, facing significant soil impacts. The contaminants included radioactive sand from abrasive blasting, hydrocarbons from the oil/water separator, asbestos from waste burial, and hexavalent chromium from electroplating. The original remedial estimate stood at approximately £2.5 million, prompting the need for a cost–effective solution.

The Solution

In response to the complex challenges commissioned by a household hardware and garden centre chain, EESI undertook a comprehensive approach. A meticulous cost benefit analysis during project planning resulted in a substantial reduction of the original remedial estimate by over £2 million. The adopted remediation techniques aimed at achieving a standard suitable for commercial/industrial redevelopment. The strategies included the construction of two contamination cells for radioactive sand and asbestos-impacted soil. Landfarming was employed for hydrocarbon remediation, and on-site treatment for metal fixation addressed the hexavalent chromium issue.

Client Benefits

EESI's innovative and cost-effective solutions garnered approval from the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (DEHP). This approval granted the green light for the redevelopment of the site, a significant milestone for the project. The site management plan (SMP), outlining the location of contamination cells, received approval and is set to be appended to the Environmental Management Register (EMR) for the site. Through EESI's expertise, the Gold Coast site is now poised for sustainable redevelopment, realizing substantial cost savings and meeting environmental standards for future commercial/industrial use.

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The Environmental Earth Sciences International Group acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their Elders past, present and emerging and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.