Cost-benefit analysis of remediation methods for the Fairfax, Virginia Texaco terminal oil plume

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Virginia Tech

This paper's objective is to determine the best approaches for clean-up of an underground oil leak using cost-benefit analysis. The background aspects of the leak, including a description and history of the oil plume, aspects of the site, and applicable Federal and local regulations, are discussed.

Several remediation methods are chosen for examination. The costs associated with each method are estimated. An analysis of the area's property value data using the hedonic approach to benefits estimation is also conducted. Costs of the clean-up of the oil plume are compared to the benefits.

It was determined that the amount of estimated benefits from restoration programs is $7.6 million. Based on this information and the cost data, the microbial fence / hydraulic containment method and the enhanced groundwater extraction / hydraulic containment method should be considered as remediation approaches.