– Human Health and Ecological Risk Assessment and Technical Infeasibility in Contaminated Site Management

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Human health and ecological risk assessment has been used for over 20 years as an alternative in contaminated site management. In contrast to the majority of North American jurisdictions, the use of risk assessment in the presence of petroleum hydrocarbon or VOC contamination is not permitted in Quebec. The site must then be remediated to the generic usage criteria. We present examples of sites contaminated with petroleum hydrocarbons or VOCs, and for which a combination of traditional remediation, in situ treatment, risk assessment and technical infeasibility have allowed the remediation and development of the sites. The sites presented problems that made traditional remediation inadequate or technically impractical, including the extent and depth of contamination, and where in situ treatment effectiveness had reached its limits.