The starting point for a programme of site restoration is to understand the characteristics of the site itself, and any contamination therein. This can be a complex, multidisciplinary task. History of use is a key consideration, but information may be incomplete. Environmental monitoring and sampling provides direct evidence, but needs to be targeted, and will only ever provide a snapshot of the contamination. A conceptual understanding of the environment and key processes within it is therefore needed to provide a sufficient basis for determining how the site is best restored.
Quintessa has specialists in geoscience, chemistry and environmental processes who have extensive track records in developing site understanding, both at the conceptual and measurement level. We also have a deep understanding of the implications of environmental change, which can be a key factor in understanding the future safety of a site. For example, we have led the work to understand and quantify the implications of sea-level change and coastal erosion on the Low-level waste repository near Drigg in Cumbria.
Image copyright Dounreay Site Restoration Ltd and NDA