Contaminant Profile: PAHs

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and for short, PAHs. Do you want the technical description of carbon chains and bonds or perhaps something more relevant? Let’s go with relevant and why they are even something that environmental consultants look for. For starters, PAHs comprise a group of compounds that are probably most commonly associated with the use of creosote as a wood preservative, which is most often seen with treated railroad ties and power poles. However, they are also created through incomplete combustion of petroleum hydrocarbon products (i.e. fires).

So why is this a problem? PAHs are highly toxic to aquatic life as they tend to stick to sediment/soil and persist in the environment. A handful of PAHs are also considered carcinogens (cancer causing). So the next time someone offers you a pile of old rail ties that you want to line your garden with, maybe reconsider, or at least put a plastic liner between those ties and your soil!

Locations

Head Office – Edmonton
17331 – 107th Avenue NW
Edmonton, Alberta T5S 1E5

Phone: (780) 484-3377
Fax: (780) 484-5093

Calgary Office
427 Manitou Road SE
Calgary, Alberta T2G 4C2

Phone: (403) 452-1820
Fax: (403) 984-8803

Peace Region
#2, 4115 - 41st Avenue
Whitecourt, Alberta T7S 0A3

Office: (780) 484-3377
Toll Free: 1-877-888-6325

What's New

  • January 09, 2019
    In October 2018, Nichols Environmental responded to an 18,000-L spill of asphalt flux (roofing tar) after two trailers detached from a haul truck along the off-ramp of Anthony Henday Drive onto ...
  • December 11, 2018
    We had the opportunity to visit the Canadian Light Source facility at the University of Saskatchewan - the brightest light in Canada!  The facility and people that run it are leaders in syn...

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