Rechercher des projets européens

Implementation of smart pump-and-treat through diverting the natural groundwater flow (Smart Pump & Treat)
Date du début: 1 déc. 2000, Date de fin: 21 févr. 2003 PROJET  TERMINÉ 

Background The European Water Policy describes that Europe's citizens are increasingly demanding when it comes to having cleaner water for drinking and bathing and, in addition, cleaner water as part of their environment, their local and regional heritage. The increasing demand by citizens and environmental organisations for cleaner rivers and lakes, groundwater and coastal beaches is obvious and is encouraged by the fact that groundwater supplies around 65% of all Europe's drinking water. One of the three aims proposed in the Water Framework Directive of the European Commission, is to protect and improve the quality of aquatic ecosystems, including the groundwater resources. Due to environmental activities in the past, groundwater contamination is one of the major problems in and around large industrial areas in Europe. At one of Akzo’s (a major Dutch company) recently acquired industrial sites near Weert (in the Netherlands), it has been found that the soil is contaminated with substances varying from heavy metals such as zinc, cadmium and arsenic to chlorinated hydrocarbons and chlorinated fluoride hydrocarbons (CFK's). The core of the contamination, the so-called "hot spot", contains the highest concentration. The present situation of the contamination has direct consequences for the wellbeing of men and animals. Furthermore, as an effect of the groundwater flow, the contamination spreads from the "hot spots" threatening and contaminating clean areas, such as nature and water sources. In the past ten to twenty years, the various stakeholders concerned (owners, local and national governments etc.) started to recognise the problems and consequences of the contamination and began to take action. Thereby, they were confronted with the fact that remediation of the present contamination was not simply digging it up and removing it (which is in most cases technically not feasible). Remediation of these polluted areas has become an expensive and complicating business, which leads to choices such as: which problem to handle and which not, depending on the nature and remediation extent of the contamination, the soil structure, the groundwater flow and above all the decontamination costs. Different remediation technologies have been developed and implemented (e.g. Excavation and drainage, bio-remediation, pump-and-treat). Objectives The objective of this LIFE project was: 1. to protect the groundwater through implementing a new innovative technology which would control the source of pollution preventing (further) spreading of the contamination and controlling ecological damage; 2. to demonstrate a technique of slow and controlled pumping whereby slow release of contamination out of certain parts of the ground is achieved, combined with a groundwater diversion system to stagnate the groundwater flow on the hot spots and; 3. to remediate different kinds and amounts of contamination under a broad scale of natural circumstances. Results The dimensioning and detailed engineering have been finalized. The materials have been purchased and the construction works have started. However due to several aspects out of the direct control of the beneficiary the construction had to be stopped and in the end the project was terminated. The Smart pump-and-treat method has not been implemented at the Akzo Nobel site for two reasons: 1. During the final preparation before starting the construction a new hot spot outside the contaminated area was discovered. This new hot spot is situated on a neighbouring area not owned by Akzo, which made decision-making more complex. 2. The municipal authorities were not able to issue permits for the construction of the treatment plant and to install the required pipelines in the area etc. for the manipulation and sanitation system. The Bestemmingsplan (=destination plan) for the area did not allow such activities at that time. In addition, new regulations on habitat and the new law on flora and fauna slowed down the process of obtaining the required permits.