The Groundwater Pollution and Hydrology Course


Groundwater quality is a national priority issue of immense and ever-growing proportions. The Federal government has passed strict, comprehensive and long-term legislation such as the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA), the Safe Drinking Water Act and the Pollution Prevention Act. Many state governments have passed even stricter regulations to protect groundwater quality and to clean up currently polluted aquifers.

Event Type:
Workshops/Training Courses
Sep. 18-22, 2017
Hotel Kabuki
San Francisco , CA , USA

These laws and regulations affect all sources of groundwater contamination, including chemical industries, gasoline stations, industrial landfills and lagoons, refineries, hazardous solid waste management units, municipal and private solid waste activities, nuclear waste disposal practices, mining practices and pesticide/fertilizer agricultural practices. In addition, many state laws, banks and insurance companies require groundwater quality site assessments before commercial property can be financed or sold. The magnitude and extent of the problem is reflected in EPA’s National Priorities List, which now numbers over 1300 sites, with an average cleanup cost of over $20 million per location. This list grows each year as new sites are added through state and federal groundwater programs.

Hundreds of lawsuits against private industries, such as the Woburn, Massachusetts case involving the leukemia deaths of several children (documented in the book and film, A Civil Action), have brought a public awareness and determination which has rarely been seen in past environmental issues involving water and air pollution. A measure of this concern is the vigorously enforced state and federal regulations which cover all aspects of the problem from prevention to cleanup.

The tens of billions of dollars being spent on groundwater pollution problems in the U.S. has made it the number one priority among environmental issues. In Europe, over $5 billion per year is being spent to reverse the current damage done by groundwater pollution and to prevent groundwater contamination.

The course is designed for groundwater hydrologists, geologists, engineers, chemists, environmental scientists, state/federal regulators, project managers, compliance/regulatory program managers for industry and technical experts.

The emphasis is on acquiring an extensive working knowledge of the concepts, principles and professional practices underlying groundwater pollution, hydrology and remediation. Although some areas are necessarily surveyed in the interest of time, technical depth is the norm in the majority of sessions. Like any short course, some experience is helpful but not necessary as the course teaches basic principles before dealing with more advanced topics. The course succeeds in significantly enhancing the technical skills of all the participants without losing the neophytes and without boring those with 15 years of practical experience. This is the highest rated course in the industry - no course teaches so much!

The widespread interest in groundwater has seen the offering of many two- and three-day training courses dealing with various aspects of the problem. There are no one-week courses covering all aspects. The advantages of a longer course include time to cover and absorb more aspects of this expanding field and the opportunity for in-depth technical learning. Groundwater legislation, natural attenuation, risk assessment, wellhead protection techniques, multi-level monitoring systems, high resolution site characterization techniques, LNAPL/ DNAPL research, remediation alternatives, emerging contaminants and applications of computer modeling have grown to such an extent in the last several years that intensive one-week courses, with a few early evening sessions, are needed to adequately cover all of these new developments.

Most groundwater professionals prefer in-depth knowledge that they can apply as soon as they return to work. They also prefer a course notebook which is written and carefully covered in a textbook fashion and which will serve as a familiar guide and resource manual after the course. For those who are willing to take a week out of their busy schedules, the course meets these preferences with unparalleled technical information and applied knowledge.

The course is the only one-week course being offered in the U.S. or Europe which comprehensively covers all aspects of groundwater pollution, hydrology and remediation from theory to practice. The instructors are recognized as the top six leading experts and teachers in the field and collectively have over 180 years of practical experience. The course is the established standard among groundwater training courses and for this reason has consistently had the largest attendance of all courses offered anywhere in groundwater.

Over 1300 pages of lecture notes have been written specifically for this course. Practical aspects are particularly emphasized through the study of illustrative case histories of groundwater contamination and remediation developed by Geosyntec and others. Based on the results of several hundred projects, these lectures stress a practical approach to cleanup which is acclaimed by industry and regulators alike.

One of the most widespread and difficult problems in groundwater contamination and remediation today is dense non-aqueous phase liquids (DNAPLs). Dr. Cherry will present the fundamental concepts underlying the occurrence, behavior and movement of DNAPLs in sedimentary deposits, aquitards and fractured hard rocks.

The course will also cover the latest theory and applications of ASTM's RBCA (Risk Based Corrective Action), including Monitored Natural Attenuation and Tiers 1, 2 and 3 in assessing groundwater contamination and establishing cleanup criteria.

Over 1600 slides are shown throughout the entire course. Among groundwater professionals, the Princeton Course is considered a must course of outstanding educational value.

With some exceptions, the class generally meets daily from 8:00 A.M. to11:30 A.M. and from1:00 P.M. to 4:30 P.M. Monday through Thursday withhalf-hour coffee breaks at 9:30 A.M. and 2:30 P.M. and lunch from 11:30 A.M. to 1:00 P.M. Friday begins at 8:00 A.M. and the course ends at 1:00 P.M. with a break at 10:00 A.M. After a short break, Monday extends until 6:00 P.M. Due to the exceptional amount of material, two early evening sessions will be held on Tuesday (4:45 P.M to 8:00 P.M.)  and Thursday (4:45 P.M. to 6:30 P.M.). The early Thursday evening session is a lecture on DNAPLs in fractured rocks and also an open session with Professor Cherry where participants may discuss particular DNAPL problems and/or the course material.

  • Basic to Advanced Principles in Groundwater Pollution and Hydrology
  • Fundamental Concepts of Groundwater Flow, Transport and Contamination
  • Advanced Concepts and Principles of Groundwater Flow, Fate and Transport and Natural Attenuation (Mass Flux, Mass Discharge, Capture Zones in Plan and Vertical Cross-Sections, Horizontal and Vertical Anisotropy Effects on Contaminant Flow Directions, Impact of Shifting Plume Directions on Concentrations Measured in Fixed Monitoring Wells, Effects of Heterogeneity, Mobile/Immobile Porosities and Their Effects on Matrix Forward Diffusion/Back Diffusion,Refraction, Lenses, Non-Horizontal Flow, Hydrodynamic Conditions, Dispersion, Sorption, Retardation, Biodegradation, Natural Source Zone Depletion (NSZD) ...
  • Cleanup Goals, Key Regulatory and Risk Drivers for Remediation. Federal and State Equivalents (RCRA, CERCLA, SARA, Voluntary Cleanup Programs)
  • Groundwater Monitoring And Sampling Technology: Monitoring Program Elements and Design, Site Characterization Tools and Field Analytical Methods, Traditional and Accelerated Site Characterization Plans, Well Design Standards and Practices, Collecting Representative Groundwater Samples, Preservation and Decontamination Procedures, Factors that Affect Sample Accuracy, Precision and Quality, Low Flow Purging, No-Purge/Passive Sampling, The Triad Approach and Screen Size and Location Based On The 3D Site Conceptual Model.
  • Conceptual Site Models (CSM) As The Basis For Remedial Decisions
  • Setting Remedial Action Objectives and Cleanup Objectives (Soil and Groundwater)
  • Remediation Strategies for RCRA, Superfund and Brownfield Sites
  • Trends in Source and Groundwater Treatment Remedies and Emerging Contaminants
  • LNAPLs (Light Non-Aqueous Phase Liquids, BTEX, MTBE), DNAPLs (Dense Non-Aqueous Phase Liquids): Concepts, Remediation and Challenges
  • Illustrative Case Histories of Groundwater Contamination, Cleanup and Long Term Management Costs and Aquifer Restoration Alternatives For Soil and Groundwater, including Pump and Treat, Monitored Natural Attenuation, Bioremediation, In Situ Chemical Oxidation and Reduction, Soil Vapor Extraction, Multi-Phase Extracdtion, Thermal Technologies, Bioaugmentation and Permeable Reactive Barriers
  • Ex Situ treatment technologies
  • DNAPL's (Dense Non-Aqueous Phase Liquids): Occurrence, Movement and Implications with Respect to Site Monitoring and Remediation in Unconsolidated Sedimentary Deposits, Aquitards and Fractured Hard Rock. Concepts Illustrated by Laboratory and Field Experiments with Chlorinated Solvents. Viruses in Fractured Hard Rock.. Oldest published, peer-reviewed DNAPL case history
  • Wellhead Protection under the Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments: Theory and Practice. Determining 3D Capture Zones Using Numerical Models
  • Introduction to Popular Software Programs (e.g., MODFLOW, MT3D, BIOSCREEN...)and Their Applications in Groundwater PolIution, Hydrology and Remediation: : Emphasis on Practical Applications
  • Hydraulic Characterization: Pumping Test Methods, Slug Test Methods and Practices, Laboratory Permeameters, Grain Size Distributions for screen selection and K, Hydraulic Tomography, Borehole Dilution Methods, Flowmeters and Geoprobe's HPT to Determine K(Z), Numerical Model Pumping Tests for Determining Heterogeneous Aquifer Properties, 'Pumping Tests' in the Vadose Zone to Determine the Radius of Influence for Soil Vapor Extraction Remediation
  • Fundamental Concepts and Theory of Water and Chemical Movement in the Unsaturated Zone; Laboratory Methods and Field Equipment (Suction Lysimeters and Tensiometers) to Characterize Soils and Sample Water/Gases in the Vadose Zone
  • Introduction to Popular Software Programs and their Applications in Groundwater Pollution,
    Hydrology and Remediation
  • Site Characterization (Water, Soil and Vapors): Direct Push Methods, Geophysical Methods, Soil Gas Sampling, Soil and Hard Rock Sampling/Coring Techniques, Multi-Level Samplers (CMT, Westbay, Flute and Waterloo), High Resolution Site Characterization Using DYE-LIF and Geoprobe's MIP and MiHPT, Inficon's Hapsite Portable GC/MS for Indoor Air Vapor Intrusion Investigations, Mini-Piezometers, Seepage Pans to Measure River/Lake Fluxes and Hydraulic Conductivities, Dispersion Coefficient Measurements in the Field, Transects to Measure Mass flux/Mass Discharge, Data Validation (QA/QC Statistics and Procedures) Expedited Site Characterization Techniques, etc.

Students will receive over 1,300 pages of lecture notes in an attractive binder. In addition, they will be given a certificate of satisfactory completion and qualify to receive 3.8 Continuing Education Units (CEUs). A record is kept of these units and transcripts may be requested at a later date.

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