American Experience

The cement-based stabilization-solidification (SS) technique has been widely used in the United States since the 1950s. Originally used to treat radioactive wastes, SS was then used to rehabilitate industrial sites in the seventies, and subsequently to treat urbanized sites in the eighties. Cement-based stabilization-solidification is a technology recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for the processing of more than 50 common industrial wastes. “Stabilization-solidification was the technology chosen for a quarter of the contaminated soil projects carried out by the EPA (Superfund projects),” explained Charles Wilk, Director of the Environmental Solutions Program at Portland Cement Association.

To determine the long-term performance of cement-based stabilization-solidification, a study was published in 2003 on behalf of the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). This study, entitled Evaluation of the Effectiveness of In-Situ Solidification / Stabilization at the Columbus, Georgia Manufactured Gaz Plant Site, assessed the performance of treating a site that had been rehabilitated using cement-based SS ten years before. The site, which was located in Georgia, had been used for a gas production plant whose activities were carried out for almost a century, leaving lands contaminated with organic and inorganic compounds . Rehabilitation using cement-based SS was the technology chosen. Work was completed in June 1992.

Ten years later, a series of soil samples were taken to evaluate their chemical and mechanical properties. Tests showed a high level of stability in the soil. Water quality was also evaluated and deemed satisfactory. According to all of the results, the study confirm the performance of the cement-based stabilization-solidification after ten years. The study concluded that there was no indication of potential future deterioration.