US EPA Excellence in Site Reuse Award

The Wiyot Tribe has been selected as the first recipient of the US EPA’s Region 9 Excellence in Site Reuse Award, for the environmental cleanup of the Tuluwat Village, and resumption of the World Renewal Ceremony.   The Tribe contacted Mike Foget, Principal of Civil Engineering and the cleanup’s project manager, to acknowledge SHN’s role in making “this project a reality and success.”  The Tribe also asked if Mike could be interviewed, to share insights and lessons learned that could assist other Brownfield projects.  This project also won the American Council of Engineering Companies Engineering Excellence Award in 2013. 

Tuluwat Village is on an island in Humboldt Bay.  Between 1870 and 1990, the site was contaminated with hazardous materials such as paints, solvents, metals, petroleum products, and various other chemicals.  In 2000, a contractor removed approximately 1,300 pounds of identifiable hazardous wastes from the site, but remaining soil and treated timbers remained contaminated with PCP (pentachlorophenol) and dioxin/furan compounds.  After the timbers were removed, SHN negotiated with the Regional Water Quality Control Board to protect and preserve the cultural aspects of the site while removing a minimal volume of the contaminated soil.  We then helped the Tribe obtain additional funding for study of in situ chemical oxidation (ISCO), which reduces dioxin/furan compounds and PCP in soils, but does not adversely impact the village’s shell mound and other culturally sensitive materials. We also designed and directed repair of the existing bulkhead and installation of a shoreline revetment wall.  After the shoreline was fortified, SHN conducted additional ISCO remediation of the residual contamination, and monitored groundwater to evaluate soil remediation success.  In March 2014, the Wiyot Tribe held its first World Renewal Ceremony since the massacre at the site in 1860.

Read the North Coast Journal’s August 2010 article here, which includes quotes from Roland Rueber, former Principal of SHN’s Environmental Services.  Photos of the cleanup here.



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