Jacobs has been selected by the Kaiser Mead Custodial Work Trust to design, build, operate and optimize a Wetland/Electro-Coagulation Treatment Facility that will be used to clean up groundwater cyanide, fluoride and nitrate pollution at the Kaiser Aluminum (Mead Works) Superfund site in Mead, Washington.
During World War II, the site housed an aluminum smelting plant which supported the production of bombers and other airplanes with high-quality aluminum. Remnants from these activities, including detection of cyanide and fluoride in several private drinking water wells and a sole-source aquifer that supplies water to the Little Spokane River, prompted the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to add the Mead Works to the Superfund program's National Priorities List. The Trust property occupies 50 acres of the site and the area of groundwater contamination.
Jacobs' technical solution integrates an extraction well system for maximizing contaminant capture; subsurface biological treatment wetlands to deliver consistent four-season removal of cyanide and nitrates; an electro-coagulation system for removal of fluoride and residual cyanide/nitrates; sludge disposal management for hazardous and nonhazardous waste; and an effluent discharge infiltration basin to reduce the potential mobilization of secondary groundwater plume contamination.
"Our Spokane-based team combines their knowledge of local hydrogeology with national technical expertise in extraction, wetlands and water chemistry," said Jacobs Buildings, Infrastructure and Advanced Facilities Global Environmental Solutions Senior Vice President and General Manager Jan Walstrom. "We will also be utilizing local Jacobs operations and maintenance resources located at the Spokane Regional Water Reclamation Facility, less than 10 miles away, to provide low cost, safe and responsive operation of the treatment facility."
The Kaiser Mead Custodial Work Trust took ownership of the property to manage cleanup activities in 2004. The Washington State Department of Ecology is the lead oversight agency for the cleanup with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in a supporting role. A developer has plans to convert the brownfield property into mixed-use development. Jacobs will work with the development team to integrate the treatment systems into the development planning process.