Environmental Enlightenment #217
By Ami Adini - Reissued September 18, 2017

This is a SHORT, LIGHT and SIMPLE newsletter. Its purpose is to rekindle in the initiated terminology they have once learned, and enlighten the uninitiated on terms they may have heard but never knew the meaning of.

Power of Simplicity
The EPA’s Citizen’s Guide to Cleanup Technologies

Series 15: Pump and Treat

See our Newsletter, Environmental Enlightenment #200, for introduction to one highly valuable, plainly written series of Citizen’s Guides published by the EPA at http://www.clu-in.org/products/citguide

With this issue we introduce the EPA’s Citizen’s Guide to Phytoremediation. You can reach it through the hyperlink under the blue header below.


Pump and Treat
 is what the name says.

We extract contaminated groundwater.
We remove the contaminants in aboveground equipment.
And we find use for the decontaminated water.

When all else fails, we use Pump and Treat.

Imagine a source that has injected contamination into the ground, and it injected so much that the contaminants have saturated the soil and reached the aquifer.

UST Conceptual Site Model
Source: California EPA, San Francisco Regional Water Quality Control Board

We remove the primary source.

And we are left with loaded subterranean soil, saturated with the chemical and leaching it out to the aquifer where it dissolves into the water.

We call it Secondary Source.

The amount that dissolves into the water, miniscule as it may be, can present risk to life.


The Treatment  part of Pump and Treat purifies the water.

However, as Pump and Treat does not directly attack the secondary source, the mass sitting in the soil will keep dripping into the aquifer for ages to come.

It can take decades, many, many long years, to handle a source this way.


This technology is used in many EPA Superfund sites, but is not the technology of choice where fast solution is desired, a solution that can be supported by the economics of the case.

Go to the EPA’s Citizen’s Pump and Treat http://www.clu-in.org/download/Citizens/a_citizens_guide_to_pump_and_treat.pdf for the rest. It is simple and fun to read.


You can find past issues of our "Environmental Enlightenment" at amiadini.com Wealth of information about environmental site assessments in the real estate transactions and issues concerning assessment and cleanup of contamination in the subsurface soil and groundwater.

Call me if you have any questions. There are no obligations.

Ami Adini Environmental Services, Inc.
Environmental Consultants & General Engineering Contractors
California Lic. #1009513 A B HAZ ASB
818-824-8102; mail@amiadini.com

Ami Adini is a veteran environmental practitioner with over 40 years of experience. He carries a Bachelor of Science degree (B.Sc.) in Mechanical Engineering including academic credits in Nuclear and Chemical Engineering and postgraduate education in these fields. His career includes design and construction of nuclear plant facilities, chemical processing plants and hazardous wastewater treatment systems. He is a former California Registered Environmental Assessor Levels I & II in the 1988-2012 registry that certified environmental professionals in the assessment and remediation of environmentally impacted land, and a Registered Environmental Professional (REP) since 1989 with the National Registry of Environmental Professionals (NREP). He is a California Business & Professions Code Qualifying Responsible Managing Officer (RMO) in the General Engineering Contractor classification with Hazardous Substance Removal and Asbestos certifications, and president of AMI ADINI ENVIRONMENTAL SERVICES, INC. (AAES), a general engineering contractor and consulting firm specializing in environmental site assessments, rehabilitation of contaminated sites and removal of environmental risks from real-estate transactions. (Contact Ami for a complete resume.) AAES provides practical solutions to environmental concerns using the highest standards of ethics and integrity while providing its clients with maximum return on their investments.