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Waikane Valley UXO Detection and Munitions Constituent Study

Waikane Valley UXO Detection and Munitions Constituent Study

Project Highlights:

Project Description:

Hawaii has a number of active and transferred military training areas that have been contaminated by unexploded ordnance (UXO). The government has continued the complex task of remediating these lands of the explosives hazards, but the process is slow and expensive. There are public concerns about the status of the water and soils on and near these lands, and questions about how they are affected by both the chemicals present inside the remaining UXO as well as large pieces of explosives (energetics) which can remain in or around an area following low order detonations. Very little emphasis has been given to the assessment of area groundwater, soil contamination, and the resulting risk to humans and the environment from these munitions constituents (MC), especially in sub-tropical volcanic soils. Environet is supporting the Applied Research Lab at the University of Hawaii (UH) in conducting their “Pacific Island UXO Detection and Munitions Constituents Study” for Night Vision Labs, Ft. Belvoir, VA.

Environet, in collaboration with the Applied Research Laboratory (ARL) at UH, was responsible for selecting a suitable area of study within the Waikane Valley Training Area (WVTA) on the island of Oahu, known to be contaminated with UXO. The UXO site survey included a review of previous reports and studies of the area and field reconnaissance to discover or confirm site conditions and UXO contamination levels. We sent clearance teams to the site to survey, flag, and clear any MEC items within a 40-acre area, accompanied by sampling personnel who collected soil and soil pore-water samples for analysis for energetics compounds. Environet also provided research about the physio-chemical properties of the soil that was expected to be encountered at the site.

Environet recommended appropriate methodologies for the collection of samples and the analysis of samples for measuring residual explosive (energetic) chemicals in a report for the ARL at UH. Finally, Environet will conduct a risk assessment utilizing the results of the laboratory analysis to determine the potential human and environmental risk posed by MC at the UXO site sampled.