Environmental Services and Consultants: Safeguarding the Environment and Infrastructure

Environmental Services and Consultants: Safeguarding the Environment and Infrastructure

A person works at a computer.
GPRS' Mapping & Modeling Team can create detailed subsurface maps, and even 3D utility features for CSMs to aid LUST site assessment.

Environmental services and consultants play an essential role in managing underground utilities at LUST (leaking underground storage tank) sites.

The world beneath us is vast and unforgiving, with errors carrying the potential to endanger communities and cause decades of environmental damage.

Environmental professionals utilize advanced technologies and techniques to recognize dangers, minimize risk, and remediate polluted areas. These technologies and techniques are also crucial to achieving regulatory closure of LUST sites, which are a national issue that is drawing increased attention. SiteMap® (patent pending) is a utility mapping service that aids environmental services and consultants by providing them with a single source of truth for the infrastructure data they need to do their job.

By The Numbers

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that there are currently some 58,000 open LUST releases in the United States. These releases are located in a variety of areas, from remote settings to large, urban environments. Many of these releases, however, are located in economically distressed communities where a lack of viable resources and pathways can lead to greater issues that require more complicated solutions.

Approximately 138 million people live within a mile of an open LUST release. That’s roughly 41% of the U.S. population, and includes approximately:

- 42% of all children in the U.S. under the age of 5.

- 50% of all households in the U.S. below the poverty level.

Approximately 247 million people – about 74% of the U.S. population – live within three miles of an open LUST release.  

An aerial shot of a city street.
UST releases impact not just the stakeholders, but the surrounding community and environment.

The unseen subsurface hazards of an unremediated petrochemical release can severely harm our communities and the overall environment. This is why GPRS takes subsurface infrastructure data so seriously – and why, through SiteMap®, we’re actively committed to helping expedite LUST site investigations so they can be closed safely and quickly.

The Impact of Environmental Services and Consultants

While U.S. states and territories have made significant progress in closing LUST sites over the past 20 years, each of the estimated 58,000 remaining sites has the potential to poison our communities and environment.  

SiteMap® empowers environmental professionals to enable the identification and removal of these sites, giving them the tools they need to speed remediation by Intelligently Visualizing The Built World® above and below ground.

SiteMap® is a single source of truth, expediting Phase 1 and Phase 2 studies with GPRS’ 99.8% accurate mapping of subsurface utility and underground feature data to speed the regulatory closure of LUST sites. SiteMap® can also hold a utility conceptual model (CSM): a 3D rendering of the subsurface data at the site that allows visualization of preferential pathways for delineation of liquids and may identify potential voids where soil vapor could create additional hazards.  

Due Diligence for Sale of LUST Sites

Phase 1 Environmental Site Assessments (ESAs) are a due diligence process for real estate transactions that identify recognized environmental conditions (RECs) associated with the former use of a property. RECs can be associated with LUST sites that weren’t properly closed, or other instances where toxic chemicals were not appropriately disposed of.

When Phase 2 ESA work is needed, it’s crucial that the site’s existing infrastructure is protected.

GPRS Project Managers utilize industry-leading equipment and the Subsurface Investigation Methodology (SIM) process to ensure that excavation and/or concrete coring locations are clear of any buried utilities or other anomalies before groundbreaking occurs. The mapping of these underground and encased concrete features is often included in providing due diligence on a LUST site project.

With existing maps obtained during the initial investigation, it may be possible to identify the potential for soil, groundwater, or soil gas contamination. If GPRS provided historical locates prior to the present project, SiteMap® may help the Project Manager provide you with previous sample locations, complete a utility restake, and help determine if any nearby utilities are acting as migration pathways for contamination.

Soil samples in beakers.
LUST site assessment requires immediate testing. Boring safely requires knowing the location of all underground utilities and features.

With a nationwide network of 500 Project Managers strategically stationed in every major market, GPRS stands ready to identify subsurface infrastructure safely and intelligently, creating the utility portion of a process that would allow for the identification and removal of harmful substances and sites, such as LUST sites and their components.

Installing New Utilities on Brownfields/LUST Sites

When preparing to install new utilities at a brownfield location, it’s important to map and clear the locations where those utilities will be installed. For areas with LUST contamination, the discovery and removal of these release sites is crucial in protecting the new infrastructure. Proper assessment mitigates risks such as water contamination and underground explosions, and SiteMap® ensures that each new utility site is properly mapped so you can assess it for contamination or other issues.

GPRS Project Managers assist environmental consultants in accurately mapping and zoning new areas and brownfields, removing the risk of LUST release complications. Our Project Managers are on site with you as you race the regulatory clock to help get these sites mapped, remediated, and closed.

A Helping Hand

Underground storage tank releases are hazardous to human health and the environment. Once they’re identified, it’s crucial that the process of identification and visualization happens smoothly and quickly to expedite Phase 2 study processes. Once a LUST site has been confirmed, it’s very likely that the soil, groundwater, and soil vapor around the system have already been impacted.

GPRS helps consulting firms perform fieldwork at hundreds of locations across the nation for various reasons. Whether supporting regional buyers and contractors through Phase 1 and Phase 2 processes, or international branded gas owners through the due diligence to regulatory closure, GPRS takes the safety and accuracy of this work seriously.

Your GPRS Project Manager’s job is to identify and map your underground infrastructure, to expedite subsurface assessment and mitigation activities. This in turn helps to lessen the impact on the community and remediate the release. GPRS uses advance technology such as GPR and EM locating to conduct utility locating, concrete scanning, 3D laser scanning, video (CCTV) pipe inspection, and mapping & modeling services that help create a comprehensive, easy-to-understand picture of the subsurface world. All that information is instantly uploaded by the Project Manager into SiteMap® so that you have secure access to the data anywhere, anytime.

GPRS assists environmental professionals in avoiding costly and dangerous subsurface damage that would otherwise derail a LUST site investigation. And when you hire GPRS to conduct a utility locate, you receive a complimentary SiteMap® Personal subscription where you can review and utilize the data we collected on site. This data is usually available within minutes of us completing a utility locate, and it can be securely shared with anyone you choose, allowing for seamless collaboration between stakeholders.

LUST sites are dangerous to communities and the environment – and they’re everywhere. Fortunately, many states have taken efforts to close LUST sites as they are discovered. GPRS is proud to provide valuable infrastructure visualization tools – including SiteMap® – to help environmental professionals and consultants improve the safety of our communities and the environment.

What can we help you visualize? Click the links below to schedule a service or request a quote today!

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