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June 2014 Presentation on NYC Historical Fill


Title: June 2014 Presentation on NYC Historical Fill Author: Kenneth Brezner Keywords: NYSDEC Historical FIll Last modified by: YeAglits Created Date – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: June 2014 Presentation on NYC Historical Fill

SESSION Reuse and Recycling
Historical Fill Management in New York State
Kenneth Brezner. Manager of Solid Waste Division,
As the push for development in urban areas
continues to grow, developers are being forced to
site projects in previously undesirable areas
which are mostly historical fill areas. The
proper environmental management of materials on
these sites, as well as the disposition of its
wastes within the context of tight construction
costs, is a developing new challenge for both the
regulated community and the regulators.
Additionally, the improper management of these
materials has resulted in numerous illegal fill
sites from the Albany area to the end of Long
Island. Since the chemical contamination of this
fill often has elevated levels of carcinogenic
polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and heavy
metals, they are not fit for reuse as superficial
fill material in development especially in public
contact sites such as parks, athletic fields or
residential housing. On the other hand, mandatory
disposal of this material in landfills would
greatly increase construction costs as well as
environmental impacts associated with mining of
virgin soil and rock. As such, a regulatory
balance must be made to allow for the proper
reuse of this contaminated material that will not
increase environmental or public exposure to the
contaminants of concern and will be protective of
human health, groundwater quality, and ecological
resources. Significant changes has occurred in
the last several years especially with regards to
the severity of mismanagement of this material,
such as illegal landfills in the NYC reservoir
system, which makes of the timing of this issue
Kenneth Brezner has been working for the New York
State Department of Environmental Conservation
(DEC) since 1988.  In 1989, he moved to the New
York City branch of the agency into the Solid
Waste Division regulating all types of solid
waste activities including garbage transfer
station, construction and demolition debris
processing facilities, landfill, incinerators,
composting facilities, waste tire facilities,
waste oil facilities and the New York City Solid
Waste Management Plan.  While working to his
current position as the manager of the whole
Division of Materials Management Unit for the New
York City region of DEC, an every increasing
problem of historical fill became a problem that
could no longer be ignored. Mr. Brezner lead the
agency to start addressing this significant
problem and continues to be one of the foremost
professionals in this area.  Mr. Brezner received
his undergraduate degree in chemical engineer
from RPI and receiving his professional engineerin
g license in 1993. 
Historical Fill Management in New York City
  • Transportation Research Board Committee ADC60
  • Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure Workshop
  • Parsons Brinkerhoff, 1 Penn Plaza
  • New York City, NY
  • June 18, 2014
  • Kenneth B. Brezner, P.E.
  • Regional Materials Management Engineer, Region 2
  • New York State Department of Environmental

Road Map
  • Statement of the Problem
  • What is Historical Fill and How Pervasive is it?
  • CD Registration Facilities and Consequences of
    their Current Practices
  • Direct Haul Issues
  • Management of Material in Historical Fill Sites
  • Comments are Welcome
  • Decisions

  • Historic Fill, which is mixed soil and solid
    waste material, that was used to create or
    function as useable land is 25 of New York City
  • Continued development pressures in historic fill
  • NYC government has had minimal to no involvement
    in this issue

Problem Statement
  • Historical Fill is not clean but is not being
    properly screened for and removed from the
    regular clean fill industry
  • Historic fill has environmental and health
    concerns - typically elevated levels of
    contaminants some of which may be carcinogenic
    (to be discussed later) and other constituents of
  • NYSDEC staff have found contaminated unauthorized
    fill in NYC CD registration facilities that are
    to handle clean soils/RUCARBS.

Historic Fill Areas
  • Much of NY Citys land area consists of Historic
    fill material.
  • These areas (outlined in yellow) are mostly
    former wetlands filled in with solid waste to
    make new land

What is Historical Fill?
  • Besides typical common construction site
    materials, such as plastic, gypsum and wood, CD
    registration facilities must also exclude
    Historic fill, which NYC excavations often
  • Historic fill is a mix of soil and solid waste
    materials, such as coal/incinerator ash and
    cinders and CD waste, that were used as fill to
    create more usable land in NYC.

Problem Statement NYC and Historic Fill
  • A surge in the development of NYC and shrinking
    available space has led to new development on
    Historic fill land . . . and Historic fill
    showing up in CD debris.
  • CD debris contaminated with Historic fill often
    ends up marked as unregulated fill, leading to
    illegal disposal.

Current RegulationsA Refresher Course
  • 360-1.2(b)(38) Definition of CD Debris
  • 360-8.2(a)(1) Long Island Clean Fill
  • 360-16.1(d) Registration Provision for CD
    Debris Processing Facilities
  • 360-16.1(a) Processing and Disposal
  • 360-16.2 Definitions Pertaining to Registered
    CD Debris Processing Facilities

Current RegulationsDefinition of CD Debris
  • 360-1.2 (b)(38)
  • Uncontaminated solid waste resulting from the
    construction, remodeling, repair and demolition
    of utilities, structures and roads and
    uncontaminated solid waste resulting from land

Current RegulationsCD Processing Facilities
  • 360-16.1(a) Processing and disposal
  • The facility may not accept putrescible material
    or other solid wastes mixed with CD debris
    unless the facility meets the applicable
    requirements of Subpart 360-11.
  • Any mixture of solid waste and CD debris must be
    disposed of at a solid waste management facility
    authorized by the department to accept the mixed
    solid waste.

Current RegulationsRegistration of CD
Processing Facilities
  • 360-16.1(d)
  • . . . (i) a facility receiving and processing
    only recognizable uncontaminated concrete and
    other masonry waste (including steel or
    fiberglass reinforcing embedded in concrete),
    asphalt pavement, brick, soil or rock that has
    not been in contact with a spill from a petroleum
    product, hazardous waste, or industrial waste,
    and that is not commingled with any other solid
    waste . . .

Current RegulationsDefinitions - Registered CD
Debris Processing Facilities
  • 360-16.2
  • The following terms have the following meanings
    when used in this Subpart
  • (a) Pulverize means to process by any mechanical
    means such as, but not limited to crushing,
    grinding, chipping or shredding that breaks and
    intermixes the components of CD debris into
    small fragments so that the basic constituents of
    these fragments cannot be readily identified by
    the department through visual observation.

Current RegulationsDefinitions - Registered CD
Debris Processing Facilities
  • 360-16.2
  • (b) Screenings means the resulting material that
    is separated from CD debris by passing through
    the openings of a screen.
  • (c) Uncontaminated means CD debris that is not
    mixed or commingled with other solid waste at the
    point of generation, processing or disposal, and
    that is not contaminated with spills of a
    petroleum product, hazardous waste or industrial

  • Recognizable and Uncontaminated
  • Concrete
  • Asphalt pavement
  • Rock
  • Brick and
  • Soil

Examples of Non-RUCARBS
More Examples of Non-RUCARBS
Non-RUCARBS Cause for Concern
  • Non-RUCARBS debris could have environmental and
    health concerns because it typically has elevated
    levels of contaminants, such as PAHs, some of
    which may be carcinogenic and other constituents
    of concern.

Non-RUCARBS Cause for Concern
  • The waste you see may be the tip of the iceberg .
    . .
  • More so than the unacceptable CD waste you see,
    the materials that you can not see, usually
    Historic fill, are the ones that can be of the
    greatest concern.

PAHs Health Concerns and Exposure Routes
  • PAHs Health
  • Several PAH compounds are known or probable human
  • PAHs Exposure Routes
  • Breathing in dust particles with attached PAHs.
  • Drinking PAH-contaminated water.
  • Swallowing food, soil, or dust particles that
    contain PAHs.
  • Skin contact with PAH-contaminated soil.
  • PAHs Common Exposure Sources
  • cigarette smoke, vehicle exhausts, asphalt roads
  • coal, coal tar, asphalt millings (proposed to
    excluded in new regulations)
  • wildfires, agricultural burning, residential wood
  • municipal and industrial waste incineration
  • hazardous waste sites

Problem Statement Another Look
  • Registered CD debris facilities are receiving
    waste that is mixed with Historic fill and
    regulated CD material, which are unauthorized
    wastes, and are distributing fill materials to
    sites in Regions 1-4 that contain Historic fill
    and regulated CD material.
  • Historic fill has environmental and health
    concerns because it typically has elevated levels
    of contaminants, such as PAHs, some of which may
    be carcinogenic and other constituents of
  • NYSDEC staff have found contaminated unregulated
    fill in NYC CD registration facilities that was
    later verified to have chemical levels exceeding
    NYSDEC Part 375 Residential Soil Cleanup
    Objectives (SCOs)

Direct Haul Issues
  • Historical Fill from construction sites are going
    without any control by local governments into the
    cheapest holes
  • Since there is no tracking system in place, DEC
    only finds out after the fact, usually at the end
  • Responsibility needed to be redirected from the
    receiving landowner to the generator with a
    tracking system

Historical Fill Sites
  • Most Material from Historic Fill Sites are still
    being improperly managed
  • Historic Fill is ending up in the wrong homes
  • Are considered old landfills
  • NYSDEC staff resources needed to review on
    case-by-case basis

Historical Fill Site (Contd)
  • Two primary rules that are used
  • Can not allow an increase of contamination from
    one part of a site to another
  • Protective cover system either two foot soil
    cover/impermeable cover system and demarcation

Historical Fill Sites (Contd)
  • Solid Waste Unit uses only the science of Part
    375 SCOs because
  • DMM by regulation can not use environmental
  • Importation of contaminated materials at solid
    waste management sites is an unacceptable
    alternative to permitted landfilling

Lessons LearnedRecent Projects
  • Historical Fill
  • Materials excavated from historic fill areas is
    classified by NYSDEC as a regulated MSW unless it
    is exclusively CD waste
  • The presumption can be rebutted through site
    investigations, physical examination and chemical

NYSDECs Approach to the Problem
  • Moving forward, NYSDEC will be strictly enforcing
    the current regulations.
  • This means there should be no other waste
    materials in what should be RUCARBS.
  • Regulated entities will be required to implement
    their own waste control plan that will prevent
    any unauthorized material in your CD debris.

What can you do?Other Ideas
  • Obtain certification from the generator who has
    the primary responsibility for the waste.
  • Research the location of the source material, if
    same is an old fill/industrial area, via maps
    such as USCS/USGS (1844, 1866, 1891), NYC Soil
    and Water Conservation District Soil Survey
    Mapping (2005) and Sanborn Maps all available
  • Prevent the acceptance of materials with
    non-RUCARBS through customer outreach and careful
    review of the material before acceptance
  • Voluntary User Notification form.

Lessons Learned Recent Projects
  • Historic Fill
  • Allowed reuse at other locations at the same site
    when chemical levels are similar relocated fill
    is covered with clean soil or impermeable cover
  • DEC reviews such request on a case-by-case basis
  • Limited reuse off-site when the material is
    chemically acceptable through the BUD process

Lessons LearnedScience of Part 375
  • Lower of Residential and Groundwater SCOs
  • Ecological SCOs where necessary
  • Restricted-Residential SCOs ONLY in unique
    landfill closures if appropriate setting future
    land use is regulated
  • Commercial only at Regulated Site
    (permits/consent orders)
  • Industrial Numbers Only with Landfill Permit

Ideas for the Future
  • Our goal is to work with you, not against you, in
    achieving full compliance, . . .
  • We want your thoughts on how we can overcome the
    problem . . .

Thank you
  • Questions
  • And Comments?

  • Contact Information
  • Kenneth B. Brezner, P.E.
  • Regional Materials Management Engineer
  • NYSDEC Region 2
  • Division of Materials Management
  • Region 2
  • 718-482-4896
  • kbbrezne_at_gw.dec.state.ny.us
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