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Soil solidification being used to lock-away asbestos contaminated soil


Soil stabilisation can be used to transform weak, unsuitable materials into reusable construction products by adding lime, cement or other binders. It can also be used to immobilise  contaminants, effectively removing the linkage between contaminants and receptors (Source-Pathway-Receptor model). Stabilised soils are then suitable for a range of applications, such as bulk fill or road construction. This removes the need for waste disposal and associated costs, as well as reducing material procurement requirements, helping make sites more sustainable and save money.


Soil stabilisation techniques can be broadly be split into two types, Stabilisation and Solidification:


  • Stabilisation involves addition of immobilising agents which reduce the contaminant’s leachability, mobility or change it into a less toxic form. For example, using a reducing agent to turn hexavalent chromium into insoluble and non-toxic trivalent chromium.

  • Solidification involves reducing the mobility of the contaminant, using methods such as incorporating contaminated soil into concrete, or bulk-fill using low-level asbestos containing materials (ACM) The objective being that the contaminants can’t reach any receptors, thereby removing the risk.


Whether or not Soil Stabilisation has potential on a site is influenced by many factors, such as contaminant type and the chemical and physical characteristics of the soil. ERS offers treatability testing and laboratory or on-site scale pilot trials which can demonstrate the efficiency of agents or the suitability binders before designing a full-scale programme.


If you’d like to find out if Soil Stabilisation is suitable for your site, contact us today to speak to one of our experts.


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