A release of aqueous film-forming foam (AFFF), water, and petroleum products occurred during a fire at a refinery in the Midwestern U.S. The combined fluids migrated from the facility through stormwater features with eventual discharge to adjacent properties. Barr was hired to evaluate conditions following response actions and navigate regulatory concerns surrounding per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). Barr’s evaluation also assessed alternatives for mitigating the future risk of release of AFFF.
Several conceptual alternatives were evaluated, including completing grading and curbing to provide containment, upgrading existing infrastructure to pump fluids to aboveground storage tanks during a fire, and constructing ponds to provide storage. Evaluation criteria included the prevention of off-site discharge, impacts to firefighters, constructability within the active facility, permitting and regulatory considerations, capital costs, and operations and maintenance. The conceptual alternatives evaluation allowed the refinery to make an informed decision on the best approach before proceeding with its capital expenditure.
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Senior Environmental Engineer
Vice President Senior Engineer