: A group of investors wished to purchase a property (terminal facility) located adjacent to an inlet for the construction/development of a power plant. The investors requested a baseline environmental assessment prior to closing on the property to determine if and to want extent the property had been impacted by a release (or releases) of petroleum hydrocarbons to subsurface soils and/or groundwater. They also wished to assess their future liability with regards to the property.

Approach: A soil vapor survey was conducted to determine the areal (horizontal) extent of possible petroleum hydrocarbon contamination in subsurface soils and/or groundwater resulting from historical operations on the terminal facility. Hydrocarbon and biological gas constituent plume maps were constructed using the soil vapor data.

Analytical results of soil vapor samples collected on the property indicated the presence of moderate subsurface petroleum product contamination. All constituent plume maps are similar in areal extent and indicate losses of petroleum products on various portions of the facility. The losses, in general, appear to be relatively old based upon the soil vapor data, since the heavier molecular weight hydrocarbon vapors (C5+) and biogenic methane are dominant. Areas containing relatively recent releases indicated by the more volatile hydrocarbon vapors (propane and butanes) are limited in extent. Using the soil vapor data and plume maps as guides, borings and monitor wells will be drilled/installed to delineate the vertical extent and degree of subsurface contamination.

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