Innovative Approach for Implementing Performance-Based Remediation Project for Optimization of Groundwater Remedial Design and Operation, Former Fort Ord, California


HGL optimized the design and operation of a groundwater remedial system at the former Fort Ord. As a result, the remedial goals for the site were met 3 years before the date estimated in the record of decision (ROD).
HGL employed an integrated approach to address the technical and management complexities, which included the discovery that the plume had extended off site approximately 1,400 feet beyond the previously estimated limit of 2,400 feet, the need to expand the existing remedial system, the presence of an adjacent carbon tetrachloride plume, and existence of critical habitat. The integrated technical approach included the use of groundwater models, a cloud-based parallelized computational optimization methodology that used HGL’s Physics-Based Management Optimization (PBMOTM) tool, the ongoing adjustment of pumping schedules based on performance monitoring, and construction practices that minimized impacts on habitat. HGL achieved the groundwater remedial actions objectives in 2014, completed attainment monitoring in 2015, and obtained remedial action-completion concurrence from California regulatory agencies in 2016.
In April 2017, the American Academy of Environmental Engineers & Scientists® (AAEES) awarded HGL a grand prize for its work at the former Fort Ord. The Excellence in Environmental Engineering and Science competition award was received in the category for research, planning, design, or operations/management projects.

Groundwater and Extraction Treatment System at the Former Fort Ord Site, CA
Project Highlights
Recalibrated the groundwater flow and transport model developed during the remedial design phase to simulate the migration of TCE.
Used a groundwater model in conjunction with PBMOTM to evaluate alternative pumping strategies, including varied extraction rates and continual versus intermittent pumping at any combination of wells.
Conducted PBMOTM simulations that provided the basis for developing an optimized exit strategy that ensured that cleanup goals would be met in the most cost-effective manner and within the time period envisioned in the ROD.