PCB remediation services sound like something from another planet, unfortunately, they’re not. PCB remediation services are the cleanup of polychlorinated biphenyl waste.
Not sure what polychlorinated biphenyls are? Worried that you might need PCB’s cleaned up and don’t know it? Don’t panic, we’re going to tell you everything you need to know!
What Are Polychlorinated Biphenyls?
Polychlorinated biphenyls are organic manmade chemicals that are found in industrial products and chemicals. These chemicals consist of chlorine, carbon, and hydrogen. Depending on the individual chemical makeup of the polychlorinated biphenyls, the toxicity of them varies. The use of PCBs was banned in the United States in 1979. The ban was the result of their harmful effect on the environment as well as living things. Before this ban was enacted, however, the run-off, waste products, discarded product, and emissions from manufacturers leached into the air, water, and soil.
Examples of some types of polychlorinated biphenyls include:
- Concrete, soil, and masonry manufactured to be greater than or equal to 50 ppm.
- Paint, plastic, and caulk manufactured to be greater than or equal to 50 ppm.
- Natural gas pipelines, transformers, and capacitors manufactured to be greater than or equal to 50 ppm.
Do PCBs Degrade By Themselves?
PCBs degrade over time, but the time it takes for them to break down is dependent upon where they are located in the environment as well as the chemical makeup of the PCBs. Additionally, the rate of degradation of PCBs in the environment is influenced by sunlight and micro-organisms.
What Are PCB Remediation Services?
PCB remediation services are offered by environmental management companies who come in and professionally cleanup or “remediate” PCBs that have been leaked into the environment. This cleanup effort requires the removal of harmful PCBs to render an area safe for inhabitation or use.
We should note, that PCBs that were spilled or released prior to 1978 are not subject to the cleanup
regulation requirements, but if picked up are subject to the disposal requirements.
How are PCB Remediation Services Carried Out?
There are three protocols for PCB remediation.
- Self-implementing cleanup and disposal where you must notify the EPA of your intention to undertake self-implementing cleanup and disposal of your PCB contaminated material. This option is limited based on the expected occupancy of the area.
- Performance-based disposal requires that waste is disposed of based on Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA) guidelines at Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA) approved locations.
- Risk-based cleanup and disposal requires EPA approval for cleanup and disposal of PCB waste on a site by site basis.
Why Do You Need Professional PCB Remediation Services?
Federal regulations require that PCBs be cleaned up and disposed of properly. These regulations are overseen by the EPA. Some states also have regulations governing PCB remediation.
Depending on the type and concentration of PCB contamination, the law does not always allow for self-clean-up and disposal of PCBs. In this situation, you must seek professional remediation services to properly dispose of PCB waste. Even when undertaking self-clean-up, however, it is crucial that you follow all regulations in disposal and completely eliminate any waste.
In addition to federal regulations, PCB exposure can lead to a number of severe health conditions including:
- Neurological effects
- Reproductive effects
- Endocrine effects
- Immune system effects
In order to avoid an increased risk of these conditions, it’s necessary to eliminate ALL traces of PCB waste.
Need PCB Remediation Services?
Could you use help with PCB remediation services? Do you live in Ohio or Eastern Pennsylvania? Give us a call today at SafeAir Contractors, Inc at 440-639-1191!