An environmental soil investigation is an investigation into the quality of the soil.

What does an environmental investigation entail?

It above all concerns investigating whether the soil is polluted, where answers are found to the following questions:

Is the soil suitable for the intended use and/or may excavation work be carried out, and if so on what conditions? In addition, the survey will also identify any soil pollution. 

Talk to our experts

Ing. Rob Bosch

Advisor Environmental Technology

Advisor Environmental Technology

Rob.bosch@socotec-geotechnics.nl +31 499 729935

An environmental soil survey may be necessary, but also recommended in many situations.

For example: 

  • Land transactions
  • Building applications
  • Licensing procedures
  • Laying cables and pipes (occupational hygiene)
  • Financing applications/valuations
  • Planned soil removal
  • Dredging work
  • Dewatering
  • Monitoring the groundwater quality

We can organise a suitable and effective investigation for any kind of survey, depending on the intended goal. The organisation is based on the current legislation and regulations and the relevant BRL SIKB protocols.  

We can carry out amongst others the following investigations for you: 

  • ‘Historical’ preliminary investigation NEN 5725 / NEN 5717 

The general quality of the soil is investigated by means of an exploratory soil survey. A survey like this is often demanded within the context of construction or renovation plans and real-estate transactions. 

The environmental quality of the soil and/or the groundwater is determined by means of field bores and placing standpipes by BRL SIKB-certified samplers. Samples taken in the field are preserved and then studied in the lab. 

A report is drawn up of all the work and results that can be used in spatial planning procedures for example. 

The aim of the historical investigation is to gain insight into the overall environmental soil quality by means of screening and to determine whether in the past there were activities that could have potentially polluted the soil, and whether there was a risk of soil pollution occurring. 

The preliminary investigation will collect information about the historical use, the current use and the soil structure. On the basis of this, if necessary a plan can be drawn up for carrying out subsequent surveys. 

  • Exploratory soil investigation NEN 5740 

The general quality of the soil is investigated by means of an exploratory soil survey. A survey like this is often demanded within the context of construction or renovation plans and real-estate transactions. 

The environmental quality of the soil and/or the groundwater is determined by means of field bores and placing standpipes by BRL SIKB-certified samplers. Samples taken in the field are preserved and then studied in the lab. 

A report is drawn up of all the work and results that can be used in spatial planning procedures for example. 

  • Further soil investigation NTA 5755 

A baseline or final situation soil investigation is required when there are activities at the location that form a potential risk to the soil. Prior to such an activity, the baseline, T0, is determined, which then forms a reference level. It is then possible to later check using repeat or final situation soil investigations whether the company activities carried out since the baseline soil investigation have increased the level of pollution in the soil. 

If the exploratory soil investigation discovers pollution, the scope of that pollution must be first be established. Further soil investigation is carried out to determine this. 

Further investigation is carried out to determine whether remediation is required at the locations concerned or whether other measures or restricted use should be considered. 

  • Baseline or final situation soil investigation NEN 5740 

A baseline or final situation soil investigation is required when there are activities at the location that form a potential risk to the soil. Prior to such an activity, the baseline, T0, is determined, which then forms a reference level. It is then possible to later check using repeat or final situation soil investigations whether the company activities carried out since the baseline soil investigation have increased the level of pollution in the soil. 

  • Tar content test on asphalt or foundations 

Our firm can test the tar content of asphalt on the basis of the guidelines stipulated in CROW publication 210 “Guideline for dealing with released asphalt”. On the strength of the results of such a test, the possibilities for processing any asphalt released can then be determined. (Mechanical) bores can also be used to identify any foundation layers and where necessary carry out (analytical) tests on them.

  • Survey of asbestos in the soil NEN 5707 and/or NEN 5897 

If it is suspected that there is asbestos in the soil and/or in layers of (paving) rubble at a location, the competent authority may demand an exploratory survey of asbestos in the soil and/or rubble. 

Asbestos can be suspected of being present in the soil at a location, for example, in the following situations

  • The soil contains rubble admixtures and/or paving made with rubble of unknown origin
  • At the location there are one or more (suspected) asbestos-containing roofs that have no gutters to catch the run-off and/or paved layer underneath them
  • It is known that at the location construction materials containing asbestos have been used and/or removed so that asbestos might possibly have ended up in the soil
  • Waterbed investigation NEN 5720 

Exploratory waterbed investigation aims to determine the quality of the waterbed. The reason for this can be deepening, filling or dredging work. When the preliminary survey has been carried out in accordance with NEN 5717,  the investigation aims to determine by means of sampling whether or not the waterbed has been contaminated. 

  • Test for PFAS in the soil, groundwater or sludge 

For the above tests, it may be advisable to include an indication of the PFAS, regardless of the history and goal. Our firm can also carry out a separate test into the PFAS in the soil, groundwater or sludge. Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are man-made, chemical substances that are not present naturally in the environment. These substances do not decompose easily and therefore remain present in the environment for a long time. In addition to possible health risks, restrictions on their (re-)use may also apply. 

  • Test of/monitoring groundwater quality 

A monitoring programme entails collecting representative soil data. The data is then used to sketch a coherent and comprehensive overview, making it possible to determine, for example, whether the contaminant already present is moving. 

  • Batch testing AP04 

The aim of batch testing is to establish the current environmental quality of the soil to be removed so that an environmental quality statement can be issued in connection with determining its possible reuses as a secondary raw material in accordance with the [Dutch] Decree on Soil Quality. 

  • Remediation 

Taking the current or intended use into account, further investigation can reveal the need for remediation. We have the following expertise with regard to remediation

  • Drawing up a remediation plan or BUS notification
  • Environmental support for remediation, process control
  • Verification and evaluation (report) of the remediation
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Want to know more about our missions? Contact us

Contact us
Rob.bosch@socotec-geotechnics.nl

Talk to our experts

Ing. Rob Bosch

Advisor Environmental Technology

Advisor Environmental Technology

Rob.bosch@socotec-geotechnics.nl +31 499 729935