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Soil Remediation Methods For Contaminated Land

There are several environmental remediation methods in use to clean up polluted soil. These include both on-site treatment and also removal of the soil with off-site treatment. The most commonly used techniques for remediation of contaminated land are:
? Physical removal
? Soil washing
? Bioremediation

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Physical Removal

The polluted land is cleaned up by physically removing the contaminated soil. Here, polluted soil is dumped in a landfill or incinerated. The type of physical removal process to be employed depends on the contamination type. The possibility of liquid or solid contaminants to mix with the soil must be considered. Usually, heavy metals are broken down into compounds to make sure that they do not react with other materials. Toxic organic chemicals like solvents and pesticides are normally incinerated. Containment methods are used mainly in cases of landfills. This involves using impermeable layers of plastic liners and dense clay caps to isolate the soil to prevent spreading the contamination due to rain water run-off.

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Soil Washing

In this method, chemical solvents are used to remove toxic materials from the soil and the polluted soil is treated on site. Chemicals are pumped into the ground so that harmful toxins are flushed away.Heavy metals are removed by chemical treatments with the help of organic and inorganic acids and by using chelating agents. Secondary hazardous wastes require additional treatment, however.
Contaminants like solvents and heating oil can be found in the soil in the form of liquids and they may eventually dissolve into the groundwater. Chemicals such as detergent-related surfactants and co-solvents like ethanol or methanol are used in these cases to dissolve these pollutants.


This is usually carried out at the site or after excavation. To degrade organic contaminants in the soil, naturally occurring waste-eating microorganisms are used. Here, contaminants are broken down by these microorganisms which use them as food.In certain cases, the method of slurry bioremediation may also be preferred by contractors if they use the bioremediation method after removing the soil. This helps the microbes in contact with the contaminants when the soil is mixed with water and also keeps the soil suspended.In the solid-phase bioremediation method, the excavated soil is placed in an isolated area and is treated with water and nutrients in order to facilitate the growth of the microorganisms.

MT2 is an industry leader in providing overall environmental cleanup & soil remediation services on a nationwide basis. MT2 has processed over 1,000,000 tons of lead and other hazards-impacted materials utilizing their patented ECOBOND® technology.

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