Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Digging up the Facts on CCDD

If you are in the Construction industry, chances are you have heard about Clean Construction or Demolition Debris, also known as CCDD but you may not know exactly what it is or how it impacts you.   First we need to back up a little and look at what practices have been used in handling soil and construction debris in previous years.  Previously the rules for handling the construction debris were not as clear and during the construction process could go to any number of places.  If the soil and debris were uncontaminated, that may have been okay, however since no one was testing it there was a concern of this material moving harmful contaminates to places where it could affect ground water and public health.  This was part of the reason why regulations regarding the disposal and use of these materials were recently made more specific.

What is Clean Construction and Demolition Debris [CCDD]?

According to the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency [IEPA] Website, the definition of CCDD is:

CCDD:  Uncontaminated broken concrete without protruding metal bars, bricks, rock, stone or reclaimed asphalt pavement generated from construction or demotion activities.  When uncontaminated soil is mixed with any of these materials, the uncontaminated soil is also considered CCDD – but only when mixed.  Uncontaminated Soil by itself is not considered CCDD.

Uncontaminated Soil:  Soil generated during construction, remodeling, repair or demolition of utilities, structures and roads that does not contain contaminates in concentrations that pose a threat to human health and safety and the environment.

So what does this mean?  How does this affect the way soil and construction debris are handled today?

The basic question to begin with on a construction project is to find out if there is a potential impact for contaminates from the property or a nearby potentially impacted property [Also known as a PIP].   Land Owners need to know what the property has been used for and if there are nearby industrial properties that could potentially leak harmful substances onto their property.  Is there a gas station or service nearby?  A Dry Cleaners?  A Paint Store?   If a property owner needs assistance in determining if their property is impaired an investigation by a trained Environmental Professional can help.

Uncontaminated Soil – No Potential Threat Nearby

Uncontaminated soil from a site that has not been used for commercial or industrial purposes, such as residential and agricultural soil [except orchards where arsenic and pesticides may have been applied] and that does not have a PIP nearby may be certified by either the site owner or operator or by a licensed professional engineer.   In order to dispose of this Clean Construction and Demolition Debris [CCDD] in a CCDD Fill operation, a pH test is still needed to prove the acidity is within the required range.  If the acidity is not within tolerance the material may need to go to a non-hazardous special waste landfill.

If the CCDD is from a Commercial or Industrial Property or there is a nearby Potential Impacting Property (PIP), certification must be made by a licensed professional in order to send the material to a CCDD Fill Operation.  This includes most roadway, utility and right of way projects as well.  The Environmental Professional will need to analyze samples for contaminates and proper pH levels in order for it to be deemed appropriate for CCDD Fill operations.   If it is impacted, then it will need to go to a landfill or other operation that receives impacted Materials.

Clean Construction and Demolition Debris is not difficult once you understand the rules that are in place to protect our water and environment.   At MeritCorp Group we strive to help our clients with all aspects of their Site Civil Projects from Planning thru completion.  Not sure where to start?  Give us a call!