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Sediment Remediation

Superfund (Federal and State) and Other Multi-Party Projects

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Sediment Remediation

There is no simple, single solution to contaminated sediment projects.  In addition to the complexities of multiple contaminants, sediment remediation/restoration projects often involve challenges associated with establishing appropriate background/reference locations, understanding complex historic and current contaminant source pathways, , complex contaminant fate and transport patterns, tidal and intertidal sediment transport mechanisms,  realistic current and future human health and ecological risk scenarios and current recreational and commercial use requirements.  Corporations involved in sediment remediation/restoration projects must also concern themselves with the proper coordination of remedial activities across regulatory programs and jurisdictions, as well as integrating and respecting the concern of various Partner Agencies, state and local organizations and Citizen Action Groups (CAGs).  The potential jurisdictional matrix often over-arching sediment projects includes the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, Federal Water Pollution Control Act, Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, Rivers and Harbors Act, Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act, Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) the Coastal Zone Management Act and the Endangered Species Act.  Sediment remediation/restoration projects are also invariably subject to Natural Resource Damage (NRD) claims from a variety of resource trustees.

The National Research Council has concluded that contaminated sediments are widespread in U.S. coastal waters and have potentially far-reaching consequences to both public health and the environment.  EPA estimates that over 10 percent of the current NPL sites currently involve contaminated sediments and an increasingly greater number of sites


with contaminated sediments are continuing to being added to the NPL. However, sediment issues are not limited to only a handful of “mega” sites.  Regulatory and enforcement initiatives are focusing on sediment impact and ecological risk at some of the “smaller” sites. Multiple regulatory programs are beginning to make a coordinated effort to increase attention to sediment impact at all sites – coastal and upland - across the country.  The number of sediment sites and the volume of sediment needing to be addressed will continue to escalate.


de maximis is currently involved at the management level in a number of large-scale sediment sites across the country, including the Lower Passaic River, Ashtabula River, Ottawa River, Lower Fox River, Eagle Harbor, San Diego Harbor and Onondaga Lake.  This experience, coupled with our management experience at over 150

Superfund sites, has given us the broad sophistication and expertise necessary to manage and coordinate the complexities associated with the investigation and remediation/restoration of a sediment site, be it a bay, river, stream, lake, pond or canal.We have worked closely with our clients, their counsel(s), federal, state and local regulators, industry-based work groups, congressional representatives and civic action groups to help bridge the regulatory frameworks and advance cost-effective and scientifically sound approaches for making sediment management decisions.

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