2014 and 2015 Milestones/Activities
As of December 31, 2015, approximately 12.6 million gallons of petroleum product has been recovered, and over 5.2 billion gallons of groundwater has been recovered and treated from the three sites comprising the Greenpoint Petroleum Remediation Project. In 2015, the project recovered a total of approximately 108,000 gallons of product, while recovering and treating approximately 311 million gallons of groundwater to Clean Water Act standards.
ExxonMobil Greenpoint Petroleum Remediation Project (EMGPRP – S224150)
Upgrades to both the on-site recovery and containment system (RCS) and the off-site free-product recovery system (ORS) were completed in 2014, however, the new equipment was not brought online due to a pending State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (SPDES) permit. New equipment included two new sand filter assemblies and the Dynasand® EcowashTM filter system to complete the suspended solids removal system upgrade, which also included the installation of new surge pumps, equalization/aeration tank, and piping to accommodate the new system process control system hardware for the RCS. For the ORS, ExxonMobil installed the Calco Iron Removal system/self-indexing filter system that processes, treats, and recycles the sand filter backwash water instead of discharging the water into the New York City combined sewer system. Following the issuance of the SPDES permit in April 2015, the new equipment was put into operation.
In March 2014, the NYSDEC approved the use of an Abanaki PetroXtractor belt oil skimmer as part of the Shallow Aquifer Free-Product Recovery Pilot Study. ExxonMobil had requested use of this belt oil skimmer due to the presence of a measurable free-product thickness in monitoring well DM-1 within Kingsland Yard. The belt oil skimmer recovered approximately 21 gallons of free-product during the fourth quarter 2015 and is planned to remain at monitoring well DM-1 during the first quarter 2016.
ExxonMobil completed installation of three new recovery wells (RW-27, RW-28 and RW-29) that are connected to the RCS groundwater treatment system in 2014. Recovery well RW-29 (installed in the central area of the Kingsland Yard) was brought online in the summer of 2014. Recovery well RW-28 (installed at 271 Norman Avenue), located in an area where an unrelated dry cleaner chlorinated volatile organic chemical (CVOC) groundwater plume, was brought online in June 2015. Recovery well RW-27 (installed at 359 Kingsland Avenue) was brought online in October 2015. Additionally, recovery well RW-16, which was originally brought online in 1993 and discontinued in 2002, was brought back online in December 2015.
As part of an on-going assessment, ExxonMobil continued to evaluate light non-aqueous phase liquid (LNAPL) flux transmissivity to evaluate the performance of the current recovery systems and assess future free-product recoverability. Transmissivity is an evaluation of the rate at which free-product will flow through the subsurface (or into a monitoring well) at a specific groundwater gradient. This investigation evaluated transmissivity using 3 different methods (bail-down testing, dye tracer testing, and recovery system operational data). ExxonMobil also evaluated various field methods (such as soil sample TPH analysis, shake tests, collection of undisturbed soil cores for soil and fluid characterization, and visual inspection in test pits) to identify mobile free product.
ExxonMobil began expansion of the soil vapor extraction (SVE) system in OU-7 and OU-8 in 2015. Soil vapor extraction is a remediation method where a vacuum is applied to the ground and contamination is removed as a gas. During 2015, ExxonMobil completed the installation of piping and instrumentation within the new installed SVE well vaults and performance of pressure testing throughout the SVE network. It is expected the OU-7 and OU-8 SVE expansion will be completed in 2016.
ExxonMobil began the Monitor Street tunnel expansion project in August 2015 and completed it during the fourth quarter 2015. This project relocated and improved the existing utility tunnel entrance located within the southeast corner of Monitor Street Yard. By doing this, it allowed for the construction of a full width sidewalk on the west side of Kingsland Avenue in the area of the tunnel entrance.
Former Paragon Oil Terminal (S224083) and Apollo Street Creek Parcels (S224122)
Chevron-Texaco continued to operate 13 product recovery wells in 2015. Chevron-Texaco also continued to manually remove product from one upper bulkhead monitoring well (CMW-54) and five lower bulkhead monitoring wells (CMW-57, CMW-58, MW-67, MW-68, and MW-77) on a weekly basis through 2015. During the 2015 semiannual warehouse shutdown events, free-product is also recovered from indoor monitoring wells.
In addition to routine recovery well and treatment system inspections, treatment system maintenance also included fluid removal and cleaning of the backwash water tanks, pre-oil-water separator tank, and the oil-water separator on a semi-annual basis. Non-routine maintenance in 2015 included installing heat tracing along product and water lines to prevent pipe freezing and replacing the pre-oil water separator transfer pump shaft and motor bearings. Recovery wells CMW-63R and PW-2R were taken offline in April 2015 to evaluate their well screens and capture areas and remain offline into 2016. MW-68R was taken offline in September 2015 when the pump became lodged in the well and would not operate normally due to a failure of the well screen. The pump was brought back online in February 2016.
As part of the treatment system operation and maintenance, Chevron-Texaco routinely performs bulkhead inspections and maintains the boom containment systems along both the former Paragon Oil Terminal and Apollo Street bulkheads. Chevron-Texaco continued to reseal bulkhead seams with a marine epoxy and adjusting containment boom on a quarterly basis in 2015. Only one petroleum sheen was identified within any of the containment booms in 2015.
Indoor monitoring wells in the Empire Merchants and the Apollo Street warehouses are inspected monthly, with slab maintenance activities (cracks, seams, and joints are repaired and resealed) are performed twice a year during semiannual warehouse shutdowns to ensure structural integrity of the building and prevent the possibility of vapor intrusion. Ambient air quality in the warehouses was monitored on a semi-annual basis, with a total of 18 air samples collected across the site for methane and volatile organic compounds to ensure air quality inside the building is safe.
As part of the Expanded Extraction and Treatment with Vapor-Phase Recovery System, Chevron-Texaco installed three new recovery wells (CMW-70R, CMW-71R, and CMW-73R [a replacement well for CMW-63R]) in 2015. Remedial improvements will continue throughout 2016 andthe Expanded Extraction and Treatment with Vapor-Phase Recovery System includes the following elements:
- Expansion of the product recovery and treatment system.
- The addition of a vapor-phase recovery at product recovery wells.
- Catalytic oxidation for vapor phase treatment.
- Monitored Natural Attenuation (MNA) of dissolved groundwater contamination.
- Continued use of granular activated carbon (GAC) to treat groundwater contamination.
- Continued performance and maintenance of existing containment and capping controls.
KM Terminal (formerly BP Terminal) (S224082)
In 2015, KM continued the operation of the on-site groundwater treatment system that was installed in 2014. The treatment system had a run time of approximately 94% of 2015. The majority of the system downtime in 2015 was to perform maintenance and make modifications to optimize the system run time.
Due to persistent LNAPL thicknesses greater than 3 feet in monitoring wells OW-11 and MW-6, both wells were outfitted with a temporary product recovery systems in August 2015. Product recovery from these wells operate independently of the full scale recovery system. In 2015, OW-11 recovered approximately 250 gallons, while MW-6 recovered approximately 450 gallons.
In 2015, KM continued the attempt to rehabilitate two older product recovery wells (RW-5 and RW-6) in an attempt to improve product recovery. Rehabilitation activities consisted of wire brushing the well screens, injecting liquid and vapor carbon dioxide to loosen up the sand pack, and two days of pumping and surging to remove sediment from the wells. Both wells showed increased product recovery in 2015 following rehabilitation.
In addition, iron oxide buildup in the piping at RW-9, required KM to install a groundwater line bypass. This was completed in December 2015 and the well was brought back into operation immediately following.
In addition to routine inspections and maintenance, KM made several modifications to its product recovery system at the site in 2015 including:
- Installation of heat tracing and insulation on the effluent line to prevent freezing during extended periods of cold.
- Replacement of the level tape sensor within Tank 35 and installation of an access platform to the tank.
- Decommissioning of the passive venting system.
- Installation of Spill Buster pumps within wells OW-11 and MW-6 due to the presence of free-product.
KM continued to perform weekly methane screening at various locations on the Terminal Property and performed an annual site-wide vapor screening event in May 2015 to monitor the levels of methane, oxygen, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, hydrogen sulfide, balance, lower explosive limit, barometric pressure, and relative pressure across the site. Two additional sub-slab vapor monitoring points were installed inside the former Sprague building to replace former points within the building that had been destroyed. No vapor readings were identified by the screening events that required further action in 2015.