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PDFWAC 173-340-370

Cleanup action expectations.

Ecology has the following expectations for cleanup actions. The expectations represent the likely results of the cleanup action selection process described in WAC 173-340-350 through 173-340-390. Ecology recognizes that conformance with the expectations may not be appropriate at some sites. Selecting a cleanup action conforming to the expectations is not a substitute for conducting a feasibility study. The expectations must be considered when evaluating cleanup action alternatives in the feasibility study. Any nonconformance of the preferred cleanup action alternative to the expectations must be documented and explained in the feasibility study report.
(1) Ecology expects that treatment technologies will be emphasized at sites containing liquid wastes, areas contaminated with high concentrations of hazardous substances, highly mobile materials, and/or discrete areas of hazardous substances that lend themselves to treatment.
(2) To minimize the need for long-term management of contaminated materials, ecology expects that all hazardous substances will be destroyed, detoxified, and/or removed to concentrations below cleanup levels throughout sites containing small volumes of hazardous substances.
(3) Ecology recognizes the need to use engineering controls, such as containment, for sites or portions of sites that contain large volumes of materials with relatively low levels of hazardous substances where treatment is impracticable.
(4) To minimize the potential for migration of hazardous substances, ecology expects that active measures will be taken to prevent precipitation and subsequent runoff from coming into contact with contaminated soils and waste materials. When such measures are impracticable, such as during active cleanup, ecology expects that site runoff will be contained and treated prior to release from the site.
(5) Ecology expects that when hazardous substances remain on-site at concentrations exceeding cleanup levels, those hazardous substances will be consolidated to the maximum extent practicable where needed to minimize the potential for direct contact and migration of hazardous substances.
(6) Ecology expects that active measures will be taken to prevent/minimize releases to surface water or sediment via surface runoff and groundwater discharges in excess of cleanup levels. Ecology expects that dilution will not be the sole method for demonstrating compliance with cleanup standards in these instances.
(7) Ecology expects that natural attenuation of hazardous substances may be appropriate at sites where:
(a) Source control (including removal and/or treatment of hazardous substances) has been conducted to the maximum extent practicable;
(b) Leaving contaminants on-site during the restoration time frame does not pose an unacceptable threat to human health or the environment;
(c) There is evidence that natural biodegradation or chemical degradation is occurring and will continue to occur at a reasonable rate at the site; and
(d) Appropriate monitoring requirements are conducted to ensure that the natural attenuation process is taking place and that human health and the environment are protected.
(8) Ecology expects that cleanup actions conducted under this chapter will not result in a significantly greater overall threat to human health and the environment from hazardous substances, either at the site being cleaned up or at another site involved with the cleanup action, than other cleanup action alternatives.
[Statutory Authority: Chapters 70A.305 and 70A.355 RCW. WSR 23-17-159 (Order 18-09), § 173-340-370, filed 8/23/23, effective 1/1/24. Statutory Authority: Chapter 70.105D RCW. WSR 01-05-024 (Order 97-09A), § 173-340-370, filed 2/12/01, effective 8/15/01.]
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