ESAA PFAS Symposium
Draft Program Now Available
7:30 am – 5:00 pm
December 6th, 2023
133 9 Ave SW, Calgary
Event Sponsor: ALS Environmental
ESAA is pleased to announce that the draft agenda for the ESAA PFAS Symposium is now available.
PFAS, PFOS and other forever chemicals are widely used, long lasting chemicals, components of which break down very slowly over time. These chemicals are now everywhere in the environment (soil, water and blood streams of people and animals). Remediation and management of PFAS-contaminated sites are very challenging and complex, and the removal of PFAS from the broader environment is not currently possible.
This one day symposium will feature 18 speakers spread over 5 panel discussions each focussing on a different aspect of this growing issue.
- Science of PFAS
- Legal Aspects
- Risk Management
Additional details, limited sponsorship opportunities, limited company pop-up banner opportunities and to register visit:https://esaa.org/events/pfas/
AER: Order issued to Tallahassee Exploration Inc.
On September 15, 2023, the AER issued a reasonable care and measures (RCAM) order to Tallahassee Exploration Inc. (Tallahassee) as the company has repeatedly failed to comply with regulatory requirements and address compliance issues in a timely manner.
The AER’s order requires Tallahassee to take several actions, which include:
- submitting a plan outlining actions it will take to properly manage its sites, address outstanding compliance issues, ensure ability to respond to an incident or emergency, and perform remedial work related to previous incidents;
- submitting an Abandonment Plan with specific actions and timelines, for all overdue mineral lease-expired wells within six months from the date of this order;
- complete delineation for historical spills and submit a plan for remedial action relating to these incidents; and
- provide written updates every two weeks to the AER with details on the progress of the work required under the order.
In addition, Tallahassee is required to submit financial information, such as interim quarterly financial statements and third-party audited annual financial statements.
The AER has issued this order to ensure the sites licensed to Tallahassee will not pose a risk to public safety or the environment, and to prevent impairment or damage to the sites. Learn more about reasonable care and measures orders on aer.ca.
A copy of the reasonable care and measures order issued to Tallahassee can be found on the AER’s Compliance Dashboard.
Currently more than 1,400 feral horses are located across six equine management zones in Alberta. Some equine management zones are facing significant challenges to the long-term sustainability of the ecosystem because of the number of horses on the landscape.
Alberta’s public rangelands are productive ecosystems that support many land uses, including recreation, forestry and resource extraction, wildlife, livestock and feral horses. All these uses need to be managed and balanced to ensure rangelands do not become degraded.
As the feral horse population grows, horses move from areas with good foraging opportunities into areas that are less able to support them. This puts pressure on other wildlife and livestock and creates challenges for ecological stability.
By establishing and implementing a science-based management framework for feral horses, Alberta’s government can better support the species while continuing to protect rangelands and other animals that live on the landscape.
“While past efforts to inform and engage Albertans on feral horses were unsuccessful, our management framework outlines clear, simple and honest efforts that we hope will resonate with Albertans and ensure we maintain the sustainability of the landscape where feral horses live. Alberta’s feral horses are part of our culture and are appreciated by many Albertans.”
Management frameworks are essential to protect Alberta’s wildlife, grazing animals and biodiversity. Without a framework in place, feral horses can negatively affect wildlife, birds, fish, cattle and vegetation.
Many game and livestock species that live in Alberta’s ecosystems have management plans. From trout to bighorn sheep to grizzly bears, the government develops management plans to ensure the ongoing sustainability of the species and ecosystems in which they reside.
The new management framework was developed with input from the Feral Horse Advisory Committee. The committee includes stakeholders, subject matter experts, academic researchers and key organizations that provide insight into Alberta’s feral horse population.
The framework includes a pilot project with the Wild Horses of Alberta Society where capture permits are issued to place distressed or nuisance feral horses into adoption programs.
Alberta’s government is committed to working with universities to continue learning about feral horses and better understand their behaviour through research and ongoing monitoring. The management framework is the first major step toward long-term sustainable management of feral horses and reaffirms their importance to Albertans and their place on the landscape.
- Alberta’s feral horses are descendants of abandoned or released domestic horses that were used in logging, guiding and outfitting operations in the early 1900s.
- There are six equine management zones in the province: Brazeau, Nordegg, Clearwater, Sundre, Ghost River and Elbow.
- In 2023, the Alberta government conducted a count of feral horses across the province. This is referred to as a “minimum count” as there may be more feral horses than those counted by observers.
- Brazeau: 18
- Nordegg: 33
- Clearwater: 97
- Sundre: 969
- Ghost River: 311
- Elbow: 84 (estimate based on 2022 counts)
(Sournce: EnvironmentJournal.ca) The Canadian Brownfields Network (CBN), based in Toronto, Ont., welcomed Meggen Janes as its new executive director on September 15. With her extensive experience and unwavering dedication, Janes embodies CBN’s commitment to a “Brownfield First” approach.
The CBN Board of Directors also expressed deep gratitude to Tammy Lomas-Jylha for her commitment and dedication during her time as executive director. As a lifelong brownfields advocate, Lomas-Jylha spearheaded national initiatives, fostered vital industry connections and elevated CBN’s presence globally.
“Having worked alongside Meggen for years, I can attest to her wealth of experience,” says Krista Barfoot, president of the CBN and Infrastructure Sector Leader at SLR Consulting. “With her, we have a strong champion to promote a ‘Brownfields First’ approach, ensuring our members’ voices are heard.”
Janes has worked in the Canadian brownfields sector for more than 25 years. Prior to joining Geosyntec in 2021, she was the Director of Soil and Groundwater Management and Brownfield Approvals at Waterfront Toronto. She spent six years on the Board of Directors of CBN prior to being named executive director. She served the Board in a number of roles, including the past four years as the co-chair of the conference committee.
“I’m enthusiastic for this new challenge, which allows me to continue engagement with my friends and colleagues in the Canadian Brownfields Network,” said Janes. “Tammy has created a strong foundation for this organization, and I eagerly anticipate the opportunity to further CBN’s expansion, enhance the membership value, and introduce new programming to reach both our long-standing and new members across the entire breadth of our country.”
Janes will be moderating a panel at Environment Journal’s Excess Soils Symposium on September 21st: https://environmentjournal.ca/excess-soils-symposium/
Rio Tinto Alcan Inc. ordered to pay $500,000 for violating the Fisheries Act
September 26, 2023 – Saguenay, Quebec
Canadians value clean water and a sustainable environment. Enforcement officers at Environment and Climate Change Canada work to verify that individuals and businesses comply with laws and regulations that protect Canada’s natural environment.
On September 25, 2023, Rio Tinto Alcan Inc. was ordered by the Court of Québec to pay a fine of $500,000, after pleading guilty to one count of violating the Fisheries Act. The conviction is related to the release of a deleterious, or harmful substance in September 2019. The fine will be paid into the Government of Canada’s Environmental Damages Fund and will support environmental restoration and wildlife and habitat conservation projects.
On September 17, 2019, a deleterious substance spill occurred following the failure of a boiler at Rio Tinto Alcan Inc.’s Arvida factory in Saguenay, Quebec. To cool down the equipment for the repair work, it was sprayed with water. The water from the sprinklers then flowed into a drainage system that empties into the Saguenay River. Rio Tinto Alcan Inc. took steps to stop the flow. However, 351.3m3 of water with a pH level between 4.6 and 5.5 (acidic) was discharged into the Saguenay River.
The deposit of a deleterious substance, such as water with an acidic pH, in water which is frequented by fish is an offence under subsection 36(3) of the Fisheries Act.
As a result of this conviction, the company’s name will be added to the Environmental Offenders Registry. The Registry contains information on convictions of businesses registered for offences committed under federal environmental laws.
Environment and Climate Change Canada has created a free subscription service to help Canadians stay current with what the Government of Canada is doing to protect our natural environment.
Michigan AG Sues Grand Rapids Airport Authority Over PFAS Discharge
On Sept. 8, 2023, the Michigan Attorney General’s office filed a lawsuit on behalf of the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) against the Gerald R. Ford International Airport Authority (the Authority), the operator of the Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Kent County. The suit asserts claims under Part 31 and Part 201 of the Michigan environmental code.
The Michigan AG alleged the presence of PFAS compounds in excess of Part 201 standards originating from operations at the Airport property and off-site in residential drinking water, streams, and groundwater nearby.
The Michigan AG also alleged that the Authority exceeded permit limits for various non-PFAS compounds, that it failed to report other stormwater discharge sampling data, that it failed to submit certain monitoring reports in three successive years, and that PFOS detected also exceeded the Rule 57 (323.1057) Water Quality Values.
This site has operated as an airport since the 1960s and from then until the mid-1990s, federally required firefighting training activities were performed on-site on the northeast side of the property at the former firefighting training area (FFTA) using PFAS-containing aqueous film forming foam (AFFF). Training has occurred at other airports since the mid-1990s. Lesser volumes (10-15 gallons) of AFFF have been used annually at the “ARFF and Ramp 5” pad locations to test firefighting response equipment. AFFF use locations (FFTA, ARFF, Ramp 5) exist within the Outfall 011 drainage area. Storm water collected in the Outfall 011 drainage area flows through a permitted natural treatment system (NTS) designed to treat storm water from airfield de-icing & anti-icing areas and is then discharged to the Thornapple River. The approximate locations of two confirmed emergency response events where AFFF was used have also been identified at Taxiway D and Runway 26L.
A thick layer of clay beneath the FFTA investigation area was found between the surface and deep groundwater. Deep (beneath clay layer) groundwater flow direction in the FFTA investigation area is north/northeast. Shallow (above clay layer) perched groundwater has been identified in the FFTA investigation area. Storm water drainage flows to multiple locations off airport property toward either the Thornapple River (east) or Plaster Creek (west). Stormwater, in the vicinity of the FFTA, ARFF, and Ramp 5, drains toward the Thornapple River.
In an article written by Arthur Siegal of Taft Stettinius & Hollister, it appears that Michigan AG tired of asking for the airport’s compliance and waiting for what the AG viewed as meaningful remediation. The Michigan AG sent the airport the following:
- On May 1, 2020, a Compliance Communication regarding PFAS substances released at the Airport attributable to aqueous fire-fighting foam (AFFF) use. The Authority was directed to immediately act to contain or remove the source of contamination, notify the Michigan AG and affected neighbors of migrating contamination, define the nature and extent of the release, and undertake response activities to achieve Part 201 cleanup criteria.
- On Oct. 9, 2020, another Compliance Communication noted MIchigan AG’s determination that the releases had migrated off-site, contaminating nearby residential drinking water wells. The letter requested basically the same actions requested on May 1.
- On Dec. 9, 2020, a Violation Notice that cited the Authority’s failure to undertake the response activities requested in the prior communications. The Violation Notice requested the Authority provide the Michigan AG a written commitment to comply with Part 201.
- On March 24, 2021, a Violation Notice regarding the Authority’s failure to adhere to the effluent limitations in its NPDES Permit and its discharge of PFAS substances in excess of state water quality standards. The Violation Notice requested a meeting to discuss the potential resolution of these violations of Part 31 and to establish a plan to prevent future discharges of PFAS substances.
- On March 30, 2021, an Enforcement Notice included a list of the Authority’s violations of Part 201 and proposed resolving the Part 201 violations through an administrative settlement agreement.
- On July 5, 2023, a Violation Notice and Enforcement Notice included a list of the Authority’s violations of Part 31 and the NPDES Permit.
The lawsuit alleges that the Authority violated the effluent limits and reporting requirements of its NPDES permit and sought both injunctive relief, attorney fees and costs, and civil fines of between $2,500 and $25,000 per day. The lawsuit also alleges that the State has incurred and continues to incur response activity costs responding to the alleged release and threatened release of hazardous substances and sought permanent injunctive relief and civil fines of between $1,000 and $10,000 per day for alleged multiple violations of Part 201 of NREPA by the Authority. Further, the lawsuit seeks a declaratory judgment that the Authority is obligated to perform all future response activities necessary to protect public health, safety, or welfare or the environment. If granted, this would be an open-ended obligation to at least study the site to delineate the extent of the PFAS compounds and pursue response activities to achieve Part 201 cleanup criteria. At this point, what those two tasks will cost is unknown.
Nine Firms Selected for Share of $800M PFAS Environmental Remediation Services by U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
The United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Huntsville District recently announced that nine consulting firms were selected to perform environmental and remediation services at U.S. military bases around the world. The total value of the contract is $800 million (USD).
During the contract’s five-year performance period, the nine companies will compete for projects under a competitive bidding process. The scope of services under the framework includes the removal, transport and disposal of Aqueous Film Forming Foam (AFFF) containing Per-and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) from fire suppression systems.
PFAS are a widely used group of chemicals that do not break down in the environment and are therefore difficult to treat. The contract includes employing innovative techniques including creating an AFFF foam transition digital tool to collect, organize and report data gathered by field personnel during foam transition activities, as well as replacing firefighting foams with equivalent substances that do not contain PFAS.
These AFFF support services will be delivered at various U.S. Department of Defense commands and installations and other federal agencies located across the United States, including Alaska and Hawaii, the U.S. territories and outlying areas.
New ESAA Members
ESAA welcomes the following new members. If you are not a member of ESAA you can join now via: https://esaa.org/join-esaa/
ARO Environmental Solutions Ltd.
64056, 5628 4 Street NW
Calgary, AB T2K 1B2
Mayson Abraham, Principal
ARO Enviro specializes in the management and reduction of environmental liability.
True Blue Technologies
039-600 Stamp’s Landing
Vancouver, BC V5Z 3Z1
Phone: (604) 562-7836
When charged with the task of cleaning up soil or groundwater, True Blue suggests that first you scan for below-ground contamination. Once done, we can help you eat it (biologically), heat it (resistive or conductive) or treat it (surfactant or ISCR or ISCO).
Upcoming Industry Events
Upcoming ESAA Events for the Remainder of 2023
ESAA Lloydminster Mixer – 5 SPOTS REMAINING
October 4th, 2023
2:00 pm – 5:00 pm
Three Trees Tap + Kitchen, 8120 – 44 Street, Lloydminster
ESAA RemTech 2023 – SOLD OUT
October 11th to October 13, 2023
Fairmont Banff Springs
ESAA PFASA Symposium – Full Program Now Available
December 6th, 2023
8:00 am – 4:30 pm
Fairmont Palliser Calgary, 133 – 9th Avenue SW, Calgary
Disaster Forum is Canada’s premier event for emergency/crisis management and business continuity professionals to discuss and analyze best practices, tools, and support for the community of practice.
Previously held in Alberta between 1998 and 2018 with the purpose of promoting professionalism in emergency management, Disaster Forum included participation from industry, government, and non‑governmental organizations. With this year’s relaunch, we are pleased to have a confirmed set of excellent speakers presenting real-life experiences with lessons learned and applied. Our agenda and session summaries are now available on the Disaster Forum website.
Join us from October 24 to 26 at the beautiful Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel to meet and learn from other emergency management and business continuity professionals.
We’re pleased to share that STARS Vigilant has recently joined as a community partner and exhibitor, and Avert Magazine is now on board as a media sponsor. Only a few opportunities to sponsor and exhibit remain!
AER OneStop Record of Site Condition (RoSC) Update
As part of AERs ongoing engagement activities, this is a live online session delivered through Microsoft Teams that will focus on RoSC submissions under the Contamination Review for Reclamation (CRR) intent, which support Reclamation Certificate Applications. Attendees are expected to be familiar with the RoSC OneStop Submission module.
Topics covered will include:
- Overview of the CRR RoSC submission intent
- CRR Submission Expectations
- Common reasons for return
- CRR checklist examples and scenarios
You will have the opportunity to ask questions and familiarize yourself with requirements, expectations and process.
There are three Session Date Options: Wednesday October 11 (10:00-11:30), Monday October 16 (14:00-15:30) and Wednesday October 18 (10:00-11:00)
A link to the EventBrite registration is available on the AER Events webpage
Please contact [email protected] if you have questions about this information session.
Please contact [email protected] if you have any questions about the AER RoSC.
ESAA Job Board
Check out the new improved ESAA Job Board. Members can post ads for free.
- Intermediate/Senior Environmental Specialist – Summit
- Environmental Specialist –
- Labourer (Various) – Summit
- Senior Hydrogeologist –
- INTERMEDIATE ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENTIST OR TECHNOLOGIST –
- Environmental Engineers/Scientists/Technologists (Various Locations) –
- Project Manager Regina, Saskatchewan –
- Soil Handling Monitor –
- Occupational Hygienist Edmonton, Alberta –
- Regulatory Advisor –
- Intermediate Environmental Consultant – N
- Senior Environmental Consultant –
- Environmental Professional –
- Environmental Specialist –