The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) defines brownfields as “real property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant.” Brownfields are sites of old factories or businesses and are many times unsightly and strewn with illegally dumped garbage.
The (EPA) estimates that there are currently more than 450,000 brownfield sites within the United States. Redevelopment of these sites is vital as our communities struggle to reinvigorate their economic health. With Brownfield sites comes vapor intrusion — The migration of vapors from chemicals into buildings and spaces, resulting in harmful exposure. Vapor can make its way through cracks and open spaces from subsurface bedrock. During the past decade, vapor intrusion has been a “hot topic” in the environmental sector and regulation of vapor intrusion as an exposure pathway has been established on both a federal and state level.
As more and more communities become involved with the redevelopment of brownfields and other contaminated sites, it is important that our communities become aware of and understand the potential for vapor intrusion and how this exposure pathway is investigated and mitigated in order to eliminate potential exposure to building occupants.
Robinson and GEOCON collectively provide environmental engineering services to guide you through the process of vapor intrusion assessment and mitigation. For more information on Brownfields, contact Jonathon Zabrocki (815) 412-2708.