The Effect of pH Control on the Remediation of Coal Tar (Creosote) Impacted MGP Sites
William Lundy, Sr., Vice President, DeepEarth Technologies, Inc.
For years and even today, remediation of MGP sites has been (and still is) accomplished by heavy equipment digging out gas holders and other artifacts of coal gas production, filled or impacted by coal tar. Coal tar has been and remains the bane of MGP remedial projects. This viscous, stinky byproduct of a time gone by, sticks to everything it touches and is impossible to remove (save by the employment of solvents and/or heat). Excavated material required lined, covered trucks for transportation to disposal facilities, and endless hours were consumed decontaminating excavating equipment. If only there were a process that would liquify coal tar so that it could be extracted by simply pumping and transported in vacuum trucks. That day has come. A technology has been developed and patented (8,231,305) teaching the emulsification of creosote and the parent, coal tar, by pH modification that converts (via chemical oxidation) a portion of the contaminant to carbon dioxide gas. This gas infuses with the coal tar mass, thereby promoting further reaction that causes a dramatic reduction in the specific gravity of the contaminant mass. Simultaneously, in a companion mechanism, partially oxidized contaminants greatly increase the solubility of the reacted mass and render it pumpable. The presentation will include easily understandable chemistry as well as numerous photos and videos taken at actual remedial sites, demonstrating the conversion of coal tar to an emulsified pumpable entity applicable to a majority of MGP remedial projects.
Mr. Lundy is a native of Northern Minnesota where he attended Bemidji State University earning a Bachelor’s degree in Chemistry. After completing graduate work, Lundy was employed by Shell Chemical Company specializing in the new applications of their products including epoxy resins, polymer derivatives, surfactants and hydrogen peroxide. At Shell, Lundy authored patents teaching the use of hydrogen peroxide to eliminate hydrogen sulfide, a contaminant found natural gas and oil, as well as sewage and potable water. He was also instrumental in the development of a group of specialty biodegradable surfactants (Neodols®) that were soluble in both oil and water. These products became key components in tertiary recovery of crude oil and deep well drilling. Lundy was instrumental in the design and construction of a mass-burn solid waste/wood waste incinerator serving seven rural counties in Northern Minnesota. Lundy is currently a principal of DeepEarth Technologies, Inc., and he was most recently awarded patents teaching the controlled oxidation of fuel hydrocarbon contaminants utilizing hydrogen peroxide derived in-situ from the hydrolysis of solid peroxygens, the emulsification of coal tar and heavy crude oils and the abiotic dehalogenation of organohalides.