Veolia Energy North America is a world leader in delivery of combined heat and power (CHP), also known as cogeneration. When they decided to connect two adjacent steam distribution systems, they asked for SAK Environmental's help.
The connection required construction of a new 18” diameter steam line approximately 7,000 linear feet in length between Cambridge and Boston - dense urban areas. The $28M project required extensive construction management and environmental protection measures to protect the adacjent Charles River and weave through a web of existing underground utiltiies.
SAK served as the project's Environmental Manager with work that included precharacterization of soil and groundwater along each proposed route; preperation of soil management plans; preperation of health and safety plans; and securing permits for storm water and waste water discharges, and contaminated soil disposal. Fulltime construction administration was performed to ensure compliance with permits and Plans, and to provide real time problem solving that minimized delays.
To expedite its construction, the project was divided into 7 segments and 3 distinct contracts each with its own specific contract documents. Segmented construction occurred concurrently during overnight shifts.
Minimizing waste disposal costs from contaminated subsurface material was a key factor to cost savings. The entire alignment was contaminated fill with some portions characterized as RCRA Hazardous Waste. SAK implemented two cost-saving strategies. First we defined the limits soil exhibiting RCRA Hazardous Waste to the smallest quantities possible through a targeted sampling program; this saved considerable disposal costs. SAK also devised a plan to manage contaminated groundwater that avoided a USEPA Remediation General Permit. Instead of operating an expensive waste water collection and treatment system, contaminate dewaterings were discharged directly to the ground elsewhere along the project alignment where subsurface conditions allowed, in accordance with MassDEP regulations. This technique avoided the need for costly permits and treatment equipment for many project segments, and the logistical hastle of finding where to put this equipment. Earthwork and pipe installation moved much more quickly.
SAK supported Veolia Energy North America as a major contributor to improving water quality in the Charles River by reducing thermal discharges to the Charles River, while fostering economic growth downtown, and proactively managing energy resources throughout the region.