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TP18 Assessing Ecosystem Services and Benefits
(MCC-1117-830469) NEBA for Forested Wetland to Support Feasibility Study at the Jasper Creosote Company Superfund Site.
McCarthy, C1, Nicolette, J2, Faught, B1, Sciera, K 3, Sullivan, R3, 1 CH2M HILL, Houston, TX, USA2 CH2M HILL, Atlanta, GA, USA3 U.S.E.P.A, Dallas, TX, USA
ABSTRACT- A Net Environmental Benefit Analysis (NEBA) was conducted to compare remedial alternatives as part of the Feasibility Study (FS) for the Jasper Creosote Company Superfund Site located in Jasper, Texas. The remedial investigation (RI) for the Site demonstrated risks to adolescent human recreationists, wildlife, and benthic organisms exposed to soil/sediment in a seasonally inundated forested wetland with elevated levels of PAHs. After several remedial alternatives were developed, a NEBA was used to compare the impacts of the alternatives on the existing ecosystem. The wetland provides habitat for amphibians, reptiles, and small mammals. It also acts as a natural filter system breaking down PAHs and other organic by-products of the creosote plant that once operated upstream of the wetland, before draining into Big Sandy Creek 800 feet downstream of the Site. The natural filter system was considered the ecological service currently provided by the wetland that would be most impacted by remedial options. The following remedial alternatives were compared using NEBA to determine which had the least impact to the services currently provided by the wetland (i.e., the filtering capacity) in comparison to benefits provided: no action, complete removal of human and ecological risk-based PRG exceedances, complete removal of human and ecological risk-based PRG exceedances with enhancements, removal of human health risk-based PRG exceedances, removal of human health risk-based PRG exceedances with enhancements, and Hot Spot removal. Next to no action, hot spot removal was determined to have the least impact to the existing services provided by the wetland. The results of the NEBA along with several other considerations were used to determine the final remedy for the Site. Other considerations included cost, amount of potential waste left in place, potential ecological services gained, and time to implement each alternative relative to the project schedule.
Key words: NEBA, wetland, feasibility study, PAHs
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