Creative solutions and high quality services for every clientlearn more
Minds Behind OR&R - Meet Marine Debris Scientist Charles Grisafi
This feature article is part of a monthly series profiling scientists and technicians who provide exemplary contributions to the mission of NOAA’s Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R). This month’s featured scientist is Freestone’s Marine Debris Program Regional Coordinator for Florida and the Caribbean, Charles Grisafi. Charles talks about the inspiration for his work conserving and safeguarding marine resources, current projects including his work on the Hurricane Michael ESF-10 response team, and his plan to work with commercial and recreational fishermen in the future to prevent marine debris. (Click here for article)
Posted December 14, 2018
Freestone and Teaming Partners Awarded 5-Year Contract with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Freestone Environmental Services and its teaming partners, Sealaska Technical (Prime Contractor) and SWCA Environmental Consultants, were awarded a 5-year contract to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) Walla Walla District. Work performed under this Contract is intended to augment Corps District/Division expertise with technical and logistical support required for hydropower, navigation, flood risk management, water supply, ecosystem restoration, and recreation projects and for other environmental services. Work will include field and laboratory sampling, data collection, and analysis protocols, logistical support for field studies, development of relevant analysis and documentation required by Federal and state regulations, most notably the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Clean Water Act (CWA), and the Endangered Species Act (ESA), literature searches and coordination with Federal, state, and local agencies.
Posted August 25, 2017
2017 Tri-City Herald Progress Edition Highlights Freestone
This past year Freestone Environmental Services, Inc. continued its support for the safe, effective cleanup of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Hanford Site. At the same time, we made substantial progress in our efforts to diversify our business base with non-Hanford contracts. Today, our footprint extends across the United States and into the oceans where we are helping clients address environmental issues that affect a global community.
Nationally, there is great need for environmental services that support human health and that preserve, protect and sustain habitat for wildlife and marine life. With our expertise and 20-year performance history, we are capitalizing on opportunities to address these needs. Our major clients include DOE and its Hanford contractors, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), other federal agencies and utilities. (Click here for article)
Posted March 16, 2017
2016 Tri-City Herald Progress Edition Highlights Freestone
The Tri-City Herald's 2016 Progress Edition features local businesses, institutions, and agencies that are active participants in sustaining the vibrancy of our local and regional economy. Now, in our 19th year of operations, Freestone is embarking on international projects, helping clients address environmental challenges in other parts of the world. Freestone is pleased to play a role in our community's growth and progress. (Click here for article)
Posted March 23, 2016
NOAA Awards Freestone Contract for National Marine Fisheries Service Greater Pacific Region
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has awarded Freestone a Professional Scientific and Technical Support Services contract for the National Marine Fisheries Service's (NMFS) Greater Pacific Region. NMFS is responsible for the management, conservation and protection of living marine resources within the United States Exclusive Economic Zone. NMFS also plays a supportive and advisory role in the management of living marine resources in coastal areas understate jurisdiction. NMFS provides scientific and policy leadership in the international arena and implements international conservation and management measures. This work is administered through the Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center and Pacific Islands Regional Office located in Honolulu, Hawaii. The scope of work is broad and includes fishery management, resource protection, habitat conservation, and scientific research projects. The work will occur in United States Territories, United StatesProtectorates, U.S. Exclusive Economic Zones, U.S. Pacific remote island areas (PRIAs), foreign countries and/or other various island groups,atolls, field stations/outposts, and the open seas. More typical work sites include American Samoa, Pago Pago, Guam, Saipan, The Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) and the six Coral Triangle countries (CT6) of Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea, and Timor-Leste.
Posted April 2, 2015
Washington River Protection Solutions Awards Contract to Develop Closure Plans for Radioactive Waste Storage Tanks
Washington River Protection Solutions has awarded Freestone Environmental Services, Inc. a contract to prepare RCRA closure plans for multiple radioactive waste storage tanks at the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site. The contract scope involves research and evaluation of options for closure activities including emerging technologies, technical and facilitation support to regulator and stakeholder interactions. The single-shell tanks system is comprised of 149 tanks, most with 500,000- to 1-million-gallon capacities that contain mixed radioactive and dangerous chemical waste, a legacy of plutonium production for the Manhattan Project and Cold War U.S. nuclear weapons arsenal.
Posted March 15, 2015
NOAA National Ocean Service Recognizes Outstanding Contributions of Freestone Employees
Freestone employees continue to be recognized for their outstanding performance in support to NOAA. Recently two members were honored for their exceptional work and received National Ocean Service Team Member of the Year Awards. Brianne Connelly was awarded the NOS recognition for her leadership role with the CAMEO software suite, which is a hazardous materials response and planning tool. Ashley Braun received the honor for her outstanding efforts improving and developing the Office of Response and Restoration’s social media presence. A third Freestone employee, Meg Imholt was also recognized for her efforts assisting the Hurricane Sandy Workgroup, as part of the NOS Special Recognition to a Group award. The awards were presented at the NOS Annual Employee Recognition and Awards Ceremony held in Silver Spring, Maryland. The National Ocean Service (NOS) is the nation’s most comprehensive ocean and coastal agency. Its mission is to provide science-based solutions through collaborative partnerships to address evolving economic, environmental and social pressures on our oceans and coasts. The agency observes, measures, assesses, and manages the nation’s coastal, ocean, and Great Lakes areas; provides critical navigation products and services; and conducts response and restoration activities to protect vital coastal resources.
Posted October 30, 2014
Providing science-based solutions to meet our clients needslearn more
CH2M HILL Awards Contract to Freestone to Prepare CERCLA Regulatory Documents
CH2M HILL Plateau Remediation Company has awarded a contract to Freestone Environmental Services, Inc., to prepare Action Memorandum and Removal Action Work Plan documents supporting the 200-DV-1 Operable Unit Perched Water Pumping and Pore Water Removal action. Completion of the action will remove perched water containing uranium, technetium-99, nitrate, total chromium, hexavalent chromium, and tritium contaminants from the deep vadose zone at the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site. The contract also includes preparation of a document establishing a path forward for transitioning the soil vapor extraction (SVE) systems in the 200-PW-1 Operable Unit (OU) from the current cycle of active operations to closure. The SVE systems have been in operation as an interim cleanup remedy since 1992.
Posted April 17, 2014
Geologic/Hydrogeologic Support Services Contract Awarded
Freestone Environmental Services, Inc. has been awarded a contract by CH2M Hill Plateau Remediation Company to provide geologic and hydrogeologic services. The contract scope involves planning, organizing, and performing document production in support of drilling activities, technical analyses, and regulatory planning. Field geology technical support will be provided for drilling and borings, construction of wells for characterization, monitoring, injection and extraction pump and treat systems, technology demonstration borings and wells, and well site decommissioning activities across the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site near Richland, Washington. The scope also includes oversight of soil, vapor, and groundwater sampling activities, and preparation of RCRA and CERCLA regulatory documents and reports related to the management and clean up of hazardous and radioactive waste sites and facilities at the Hanford Site. The contract has a 3 year period of performance.
Posted April 12, 2014
Washington River Protection Solutions Awards Freestone Subcontract to Support Tank Farm Soil Investigations
Richland, WA - Washington River Protection Solutions, LLC (WRPS), has awarded Freestone Environmental Services, Inc. a subcontract to develop regulatory documents and interpret characterization data in support of Hanford Tank Farm soil investigations. WRPS is the Department of Energy Office of River Protection prime contractor at the Hanford Site and is responsible for safely managing radioactive tank waste and reducing the risk to the environment until it is prepared for disposal. The waste is stored in 149 older single-shell tanks and 28 newer and safer double-shell tanks that are grouped into 18 farms near the center of the 586-square-mile Hanford Site in south-central Washington. There are 56 million gallons of highly radioactive and chemical tank waste material left over from years of World War II and post-war production of nuclear weapons. Historic losses of waste from the tank systems have led to soil contamination in and around the Tank Farms.
As part of interim and final remediation actions for the tank farms, soil contamination associated with the tank farms must be evaluated. Freestone will evaluate historical data and develop detailed plans for obtaining new soil characterization data. The new data will be analyzed and interpreted to develop visualizations and site conceptual models. The conceptual model information will address contaminant sources, environmental setting including historical release information and hydrogeologic data, spatial variability, flow pathways relative to shallow and deep vadose zone contaminant distributions, and associated groundwater contamination. In addition to developing technical and regulatory documents, Freestone will provide WRPS technical support at meetings with DOE, regulators and stakeholders through all phases of the work. With option years the contract may extend through Fiscal Year 2017.
Posted October 3, 2013
Small Business Innovation Research Grant Awarded for Hexavalent Chromium Sensor Development
Richland, WA The U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science awarded Freestone Environmental Services, Inc. a Phase II Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Grant to develop a sensor capable of measuring hexavalent chromium while submerged in a groundwater monitoring well. Hexavalent chromium is a carcinogen and industrial contaminant found in groundwater. The $1Million research grant follows the successful demonstration of a Phase I SBIR proof-of-principle feasibility study that Freestone conducted in 2012. The Phase II grant will be applied over a two-year period and is intended to advance the development of new, promising technologies in areas deemed critical to the Department of Energy's mission. The ability to provide real-time, direct measurement of hexavalent chromium in groundwater, and send that data out via radio signals from a remote monitoring location has world-wide application.
Hexavalent chromium is used for the production of stainless steel, textile dyes, wood preservation, leather tanning, and as anti-corrosion and conversion coatings. The popular movie, "Erin Brockovich" led to the wide spread notoriety of the extensive hexavalent chromium contamination found in groundwater beneath Hinckley, California and health effects attributed to exposure to industrial workers and residents.
At the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site, enormous quantities of sodium dichromate (which dissolves in water to hexavalent chromium) were shipped in by rail tanker cars for use as an anticorrosion agent in reactor cooling water systems. Spills and leaks of dichromate solutions and direct discharge of cooling water to the ground adjacent to the Columbia River resulted in over 5 square miles contaminated at levels above 10 parts per billion. Sodium dichromate was also used in the plutonium separation process performed in the central plateau of the Hanford Site and is found in groundwater contaminant plumes there as well.
Hexavalent chromium readily moves with groundwater. Its concentration in groundwater contaminant plumes is affected by proximity to the spill source, interactions with surface water, or when drawn toward a pumped well. The ability to measure hexavalent chromium plumes is important in determining whether drinking water supplies or sensitive species such as young salmon may be exposed to harmful amounts of the contaminant. Measuring plume movement and distribution is also important for determining the approach taken to remediating a contaminated site, and in evaluating the effectiveness of a cleanup.
Inspiration for this sensor springs from Freestone's experience investigating chromium contaminated soil, groundwater, and river bed sediments at the Department of Energy's Hanford Site over a number of years. Conventional methods for measuring hexavalent chromium concentration require collecting a sample and then performing multiple steps to prepare the sample for analysis either in the field or for shipping to an off-site laboratory. That conventional process is time consuming, cumbersome, and subject to human error. The costliness of conventional methods limits the quantity of measurements that can be practically obtained.
Freestone's Senior Geochemist, Steve Hall is the inventor of this novel technology which uses near-ultraviolet absorbance spectrophotometry and compensates for turbidity interference. The sensor does not require addition of chemical reagents or sample filtering like conventional methods. It is also sensitive across a broad range from a few parts per billion to very high concentrations, while conventional methods must first be carefully diluted before measuring high concentrations.The sensor will be equipped so data can be transmitted from remote locations to a data management platform for visualization, analysis, and real-time input to treatment system operations.
A team of Freestone scientists and locally based engineers and fabricators are working together to develop and test sensor prototypes. Freestone plans to begin field testing sensor prototypes this summer. After engineering refinements are made, the firm hopes to demonstrate the sensor at various chromium cleanup sites. In addition to its configuration as a submersible sensor, a portable field test kit has been developed, and a flow-through cell for direct in-line measurement will be built for use in water treatment and industrial wastewater treatment systems.
Posted June 21, 2013
Innovative approaches to site assessment and remediation planninglearn more
NOAA Selects Freestone for Scientific, Technical and Programmatic Consulting Support Services Contract
Richland WA- The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration awarded Freestone Environmental Services, Inc. a five-year contract to provide Scientific, Technical and Programmatic Consulting Support Services to the National Ocean Service's Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R). OR&R is a center of expertise in preparing for, evaluating, and responding to threats to coastal environments, including oil and chemical spills, releases from hazardous waste sites, and marine debris. Freestone will serve as a prime contractor to OR&R with I.M. Systems Group, Inc. as their team subcontractor. Under this contract Freestone will support the OR&R divisions for Emergency Response, Assessment and Restoration, and Marine Debris; and perform related research and development, and business systems support.
OR&R's Emergency Response Division supports emergency response and restoration activities in coastal areas for oil and hazardous chemical spills, provides preparedness aids for response communities, and offers training on the scientific aspects of oil and chemical spill response. They provide scientific support and 24-hour, seven-day-a-week response to spill events.
The Assessment and Restoration Division is responsible for evaluating and restoring coastal habitats damaged by hazardous waste releases, oil spills, and vessel groundings. The division manages this with other federal partners in the Damage Assessment, Remediation and Restoration Program.
The Marine Debris Division undertakes national and international efforts focused on researching, reducing, and preventing debris in the marine environment. It serves to centralize and coordinate supporting activities within NOAA and other federal agencies, as well as using partnerships to support projects carried out by state and local agencies, tribes, non-governmental organizations, academia, and industry.
OR&R has geographically and technically diverse responsibilities such as preparing for potential oil spills in the arctic, and responding to events like Hurricane Sandy, the Deepwater Horizon/BP, and the arrival of Japanese Tsunami debris on the West Coast. The Freestone/IMSG team will employ over 28 scientists, engineers, economists, communication specialists and business administrators primarily in Silver Spring MD and Seattle WA. Staff will also be based at other NOAA locations including Charleston SC, St. Petersburg FL, Baton Rouge LA, Ann Arbor MI, Oak Harbor OH, Honolulu HI, and Anchorage AK.
Posted April 23, 2013
Phase I Small Business Innovation Research Grant Award for Hexavalent Chromium Sensor
Richland, WA. - The U.S. Department of Energy Office of Science awarded Freestone Environmental Services, Inc. a Phase I - Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Grant to demonstrate the technical feasibility of a sensor capable of making direct measurement of hexavalent chromium in groundwater and streams. Hexavalent chromium is a human carcinogen and harmful to young salmon at very low concentrations. Phase I explores the feasibility of innovative concepts with awards up to $150,000 over 9 months.
A number of Department of Energy sites have groundwater with large plumes of hexavalent chromium contamination. At the Hanford Site north of Richland, WA over 5 square miles of the aquifer adjacent to the Columbia River are contaminated at levels above 10 μg/L which is a cleanup criterion for protecting salmon. Of the Hanford Site plumes, nearly one square mile is contaminated at concentrations above the drinking water standard of 100 μg/L. Currently available hexavalent chromium analysis methods are time consuming, labor-intensive, and not conducive to obtaining more frequent measurements when rapidly changing environmental conditions must be evaluated.
Freestone has supported their geochemist and Principal Investigator, Steve Hall in creation of a bench top proof-of-principle device for testing and patenting. The infusion of Phase I funding will be used to advance the preliminary proof-of-principle results, and show that the technology can be configured for submersion in monitoring wells. It is envisioned that this new sensor technology will allow automated, real-time measurements to be made from remote locations, and is expected to reduce the considerable costs for monitoring and remediation of hexavalent chromium contaminated sites.
Under the SBIR program, the Department of Energy supports scientific excellence and technological innovation through the investment of Federal research funds in critical American priorities to build a strong national economy. The Department of Energy's SBIR program identifies specific technology development needs and invites proposals from small businesses to address those needs. The competition for a Phase I SBIR Grant is rigorous with a proposal to award ratio of 10-to-1. Small businesses that win awards in these programs keep the rights to any technology developed and are encouraged to commercialize the technology.
Posted April 12, 2013
Freestone Environmental Services, Inc. wins US Army Corps of Engineers contract
RICHLAND, WA. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, USACE District, Walla Walla, has awarded Freestone Environmental Services, Inc., of Richland, Washington, a 5-year Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract to provide Environmental Services. Under the contract, Freestone will offer a range of services in support of Corps projects involving environmental actions. The agency announced the master contract award on October 5. "We are honored to be selected by the Corps to receive this competitively awarded contract," said Dan Tyler, President of Freestone Environmental Services. "The contract provides us an opportunity to perform environmental services for the Corps' Walla Walla District, which includes the McNary lock and dam on the Columbia River, and the Snake River watershed in southeast Washington, eastern Oregon, Idaho, and portions of Wyoming, Utah, and Nevada. The Corps has extensive environmental stewardship responsibilities for that region and we are excited to be a part of this important work."
Freestone Environmental Services, Inc. is a multi-disciplinary environmental and water resources consulting firm founded in Richland in 1997. Its major service areas are 1) Environmental Compliance and Regulatory Support, 2) Environmental Investigation, 3) Ecological and Environmental Studies, 4) Risk Assessment, 5) Remediation, and 6) Water Resources. The company has a staff of 35 professionals and a project history of demonstrated success in serving federal contractors, subcontractors, municipalities, school districts, industrial clients, and commercial enterprises throughout the Pacific Northwest.
For more information call Chris Luke at 509-943-5222 or visit our website at www.gofreestone.com.
Posted December 14, 2011
Web-Based Platform for Automated Real Time Environmental Monitoring Demonstrated
Dan Tyler and Steve Airhart of Freestone Environmental Services, Inc., collaborated with Groundswell Technologies, Inc. in authoring an article published in the Summer 2011 issue of Remediation Journal. The article describes an innovative, web-based, data management platform named Waiora, and its applicability to environmental remediation projects. Freestone has worked with Groundswell (http://www.groundswelltech.com), the developer of the Waiora platform to add new features and demonstrate its performance in acquiring and processing real-time and historical data at a large groundwater remediation project.
Environmental monitoring, data processing, and reporting methods are expensive, labor and resource-intensive, time-consuming, and often inaccurate. The Waiora platform integrates environmental monitoring sensors, telemetry, complex databases, geographical information systems, models, and geostatistical algorithms to provide easy point and click access to real-time data and apply powerful data analysis and visualization tools. Waiora automatically generates contour maps and time-stamped renderings of sensor attributes and multivariate analyses. Algorithms converting sensor-derived head and solute concentration values allow for automated monitoring of mass flux and discharge to evaluate groundwater remediation system performance and contaminant discharges from aquifers to surface-water receptors. The platform provides an opportunity to reduce remediation project life-cycle costs and carbon footprints by minimizing the energy and labor expenditures associated with transportation, data collection, laboratory efforts, report generation, and information dissemination.
New Publication: Kram, M., S. Airhart, D. Tyler, A. Dindal, A. Barton, J. McKernan, and G. Gustafson, 2011. Web-Based Automated Remediation Performance Monitoring and Visualization of Contaminant Mass Flux and Discharge, in Remediation Journal, Volume 21, Number 3, Summer 2011.
Posted June 24, 2011
Freestone Advances Client Practices in Geologic Data Management
Freestone Environmental Services arranged and hosted a one-day data management workshop consisting of presentations given by experts from Schlumberger Water Services, the developers of Hydro GeoAnalyst (also called HGA) and our own staff. Hydro GeoAnalyst is an all-in-one groundwater and environmental data management software that integrates a complete range of easy-to-use analysis and reporting tools, with a powerful yet flexible SQL Server database technology. Freestone has used Hydro GeoAnalyst to manage data for over 2000 wells including their spatial coordinates, construction details, lithology, geophysics and chemistry. These databases are easily queried, used for input to groundwater flow and contaminant transport models, create conceptual site models, and for graphical output such as cross-sections, fence diagrams, and 3-D solid earth models. Two prime contractors to the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site have subsequently made the decision to standardize their technical working groups on Hydro GeoAnalyst.
Posted June 24, 2011
Freestone nominated for 2009 Mid-Columbia Small Business of the Year Award
Freestone Environmental Services, Inc. was honored to be nominated for the 2009 Mid-Columbia Small Business of the Year Award by one of our major clients, Ch4M Hill Plateau Remediation Company. The red-carpet event was hosted by the Three Rivers Alliance of Chambers.
Posted February 2, 2010