Case Study | February 11, 2013

Remediation Station: Groundwater Treatment Via Granular Activated Carbon

Source: Evoqua Water Technologies
Siemens Tanks

In 2008, Siemens became aware of plans to conduct large-scale groundwater treatment at the West Van Buren Area (WVBA) Site located in central and west Phoenix. The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) first identified the groundwater contamination underlying the WVBA Site in 1987 and in 1998 the site was placed on the Water Quality Assurance Revolving Fund Registry (WQARF), the state equivalent of a federal Superfund Site.

The WVBA WQARF Site has been under study since 1987 and is part of what is considered one of the largest plumes of contaminated groundwater in the United States (i.e., over 15 miles long and, in places, nearly three (3) miles wide). In early 2009, a voluntary clean up was initiated by the local water provider whose wells were directly impacted by the contamination, the Roosevelt Irrigation District (RID).

The contaminated aquifer in the WVBA is a key water supply source for RID. This groundwater is delivered for beneficial uses in the West Metropolitan Phoenix area using approximately 50 miles of main canals and approximately 185 miles of lateral canals. RID operates 32 groundwater production wells in the WVBA Site, and 17 of those wells are contaminated to levels that exceed the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) maximum contaminant levels (MCLs) and Arizona Aquifer Water Quality Standards (AAWQSs). Consequently, RID initiated an Early Response Action (ERA), as authorized by state law and approved by ADEQ, to restore the quality of RID’s water supply in ten of the most highly contaminated wells and to protect other RID wells threatened by this contamination.

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