Demonstration of a Subsurface Drainage System for the Remediation of Brine-Impacted Soil

EPA Grant Number: R827015C003
Subproject: this is subproject number 003 , established and managed by the Center Director under grant R827015
(EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).

Center: IPEC University of Tulsa (TU)
Center Director: Sublette, Kerry L.
Title: Demonstration of a Subsurface Drainage System for the Remediation of Brine-Impacted Soil
Investigators: Harris, Thomas M. , Veenstra, John N.
Institution: University of Tulsa , Oklahoma State University
EPA Project Officer: Lasat, Mitch
Project Period: February 1, 2000 through December 21, 2000 (Extended to April 22, 2001)
Project Amount: Refer to main center abstract for funding details.
RFA: Integrated Petroleum Environmental Consortium (IPEC) (1999) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Hazardous Waste/Remediation , Targeted Research

Objective:

Oilfield brine-impacted soil is the most common environmental problem associated with oil production in Oklahoma. Salt causes the outright death of plants, and the consequent erosion of topsoil. Also, brine-impacted soil serves to contaminate surface waters and shallow aquifers. In addition to these issues, the remediation of brine-impacted soil may be motivated by lease agreements, federal and state regulations, landowner claims, and the fear of long-term liability.

At the present time, the most common remediation strategy applied to brine-impacted soil is in-situ chemical amendment (ISCA), in which gypsum, manure and/or other materials are added to the soil to restore its permeability and fertility. Of course, this strategy is inappropriate when groundwater must be protected from contamination. At the same time, the ISCA approach will fail if the salt is unable to migrate downward through the soil profile. Such conditions exist, for example, in the Tallgrass Prairie Preserve in Oklahoma; the subsoil is naturally impermeable in this region. A field demonstration of a subsurface drainage system that has been operating in the Preserve since December, 1997, features disposal of the salty leachate in an existing injection well.

The project proposed below, which concerns the further development of subsurface drainage systems for brine-impacted soil remediation, has two objectives. The first is to evaluate innovative uses of limestone gravel in the drainage, for the purpose of reducing installation costs, and extending this technology to "historical" spill sites (i.e. where much of the topsoil has been eroded). The second objective is to demonstrate the use of a solar evaporation pond for crystallizing the salt from the leachate, so that it may be disposed of at minimal cost. Such ponds should allow subsurface drainage to be applied at sites where an injection well is not available.

Gravel is commonly employed in subsurface drainage systems to limit the accumulation of sediment in the drainage pipes. If limestone gravel is employed, it may also serve to enhance the permeability of the surrounding soil, by providing the calcium ions required to counteract the sodicity of the brine-impacted soil. Combining sulfur with the limestone should allow the calcium carbonate to be converted (through the action of soil microbes) to the more soluble calcium sulfate. In addition to the treatment of contemporary spills, these strategies will be considered for the treatment historical spills, where "clean" topsoil applied to the site must be protected from the upward migration of salt during periods of dryness.

Publications and Presentations:

Publications have been submitted on this subproject: View all 4 publications for this subprojectView all 120 publications for this center

Supplemental Keywords:

RFA, Scientific Discipline, Geographic Area, Waste, Water, TREATMENT/CONTROL, Sustainable Industry/Business, Contaminated Sediments, Remediation, Chemistry, State, Technology, Civil/Environmental Engineering, Oil Spills, Hazardous Waste, New/Innovative technologies, Engineering, Hazardous, Environmental Engineering, solar evaporation pond, green engineering, contaminated soil, oil spill, soils, IPEC, soil, treatment, brine-impacted soil, subsurface drainage system, Oklahoma (OK), innovative technologies

Progress and Final Reports:

  • 2000
  • Final Report

  • Main Center Abstract and Reports:

    R827015    IPEC University of Tulsa (TU)

    Subprojects under this Center: (EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).
    R827015C001 Evaluation of Road Base Material Derived from Tank Bottom Sludges
    R827015C002 Passive Sampling Devices (PSDs) for Bioavailability Screening of Soils Containing Petrochemicals
    R827015C003 Demonstration of a Subsurface Drainage System for the Remediation of Brine-Impacted Soil
    R827015C004 Anaerobic Intrinsic Bioremediation of Whole Gasoline
    R827015C005 Microflora Involved in Phytoremediation of Polyaromatic Hydrocarbons
    R827015C006 Microbial Treatment of Naturally Occurring Radioactive Material (NORM)
    R827015C007 Using Plants to Remediate Petroleum-Contaminated Soil
    R827015C008 The Use of Nitrate for the Control of Sulfide Formation in Oklahoma Oil Fields
    R827015C009 Surfactant-Enhanced Treatment of Oil-Contaminated Soils and Oil-Based Drill Cuttings
    R827015C010 Novel Materials for Facile Separation of Petroleum Products from Aqueous Mixtures Via Magnetic Filtration
    R827015C011 Development of Relevant Ecological Screening Criteria (RESC) for Petroleum Hydrocarbon-Contaminated Exploration and Production Sites
    R827015C012 Humate-Induced Remediation of Petroleum Contaminated Surface Soils
    R827015C013 New Process for Plugging Abandoned Wells
    R827015C014 Enhancement of Microbial Sulfate Reduction for the Remediation of Hydrocarbon Contaminated Aquifers - A Laboratory and Field Scale Demonstration
    R827015C015 Locating Oil-Water Interfaces in Process Vessels
    R827015C016 Remediation of Brine Spills with Hay
    R827015C017 Continuation of an Investigation into the Anaerobic Intrinsic Bioremediation of Whole Gasoline
    R827015C018 Using Plants to Remediate Petroleum-Contaminated Soil
    R827015C019 Biodegradation of Petroleum Hydrocarbons in Salt-Impacted Soil by Native Halophiles or Halotolerants and Strategies for Enhanced Degradation
    R827015C020 Anaerobic Intrinsic Bioremediation of MTBE
    R827015C021 Evaluation of Commercial, Microbial-Based Products to Treat Paraffin Deposition in Tank Bottoms and Oil Production Equipment
    R827015C022 A Continuation: Humate-Induced Remediation of Petroleum Contaminated Surface Soils
    R827015C023 Data for Design of Vapor Recovery Units for Crude Oil Stock Tank Emissions
    R827015C024 Development of an Environmentally Friendly and Economical Process for Plugging Abandoned Wells
    R827015C025 A Continuation of Remediation of Brine Spills with Hay
    R827015C026 Identifying the Signature of the Natural Attenuation of MTBE in Goundwater Using Molecular Methods and "Bug Traps"
    R827015C027 Identifying the Signature of Natural Attenuation in the Microbial Ecology of Hydrocarbon Contaminated Groundwater Using Molecular Methods and "Bug Traps"
    R827015C028 Using Plants to Remediate Petroleum-Contaminated Soil: Project Continuation
    R827015C030 Effective Stormwater and Sediment Control During Pipeline Construction Using a New Filter Fence Concept
    R827015C031 Evaluation of Sub-micellar Synthetic Surfactants versus Biosurfactants for Enhanced LNAPL Recovery
    R827015C032 Utilization of the Carbon and Hydrogen Isotopic Composition of Individual Compounds in Refined Hydrocarbon Products To Monitor Their Fate in the Environment
    R830633 Integrated Petroleum Environmental Consortium (IPEC)
    R830633C001 Development of an Environmentally Friendly and Economical Process for Plugging Abandoned Wells (Phase II)
    R830633C002 A Continuation of Remediation of Brine Spills with Hay
    R830633C003 Effective Stormwater and Sediment Control During Pipeline Construction Using a New Filter Fence Concept
    R830633C004 Evaluation of Sub-micellar Synthetic Surfactants versus Biosurfactants for Enhanced LNAPL Recovery
    R830633C005 Utilization of the Carbon and Hydrogen Isotopic Composition of Individual Compounds in Refined Hydrocarbon Products To Monitor Their Fate in the Environment
    R830633C006 Evaluation of Commercial, Microbial-Based Products to Treat Paraffin Deposition in Tank Bottoms and Oil Production Equipment
    R830633C007 Identifying the Signature of the Natural Attenuation in the Microbial Ecology of Hydrocarbon Contaminated Groundwater Using Molecular Methods and “Bug Traps”
    R830633C008 Using Plants to Remediate Petroleum-Contaminated Soil: Project Continuation
    R830633C009 Use of Earthworms to Accelerate the Restoration of Oil and Brine Impacted Sites