Client: Nexacor Realty Management Inc.
Location: Throughout Ontario

$2,400 (Typical)

Specific Role: Completed all portions of the Phase I ESA

XCG has conducted over 100 Phase I and Phase II ESAs for Bell Canada facilities. In 1996, XCG was selected as one of three consultants short-listed to conduct site assessment and remediation work for Bell Canada. XCG continued to provide this service until 2012 for SNC Lavalin Nexacor, which is the realty and project management company which acts on behalf of Bell and its subsidiary companies. These facilities include properties such as work centres (automotive garage and storage facilities), retail outlets, central offices, remote transmission towers, etc.

As an example of a recent project, XCG conducted a Phase I ESA at a commercial property that Bell Canada proposed to lease in January 2011. The purpose of the Phase I ESA was to identify, through a non-intrusive investigation, the existence of any significant actual or potential contamination associated with the property to be leased. The environmental database review portion of the Phase I ESA for the property identified the potential presence of a natural gas well on the property. The potential existence of the natural gas well was found in the Ontario Oil, Gas & Salt Resources Library. The information in the Ontario Oil, Gas & Salt Resources Library indicated that a natural gas well was drilled on the property, possibly around the year 1900. This well was drilled to a depth of approximately 580 feet (~170 metres) below ground surface (bgs) and there was no record that the well had been plugged.

Project Gallery – Click an image to enlarge.


Since the current status of the identified natural gas well was unknown (i.e. there was no information or records indicating if this well was plugged and as such, this well is considered “orphaned”) there was the potential, if present, that natural gas migrating from an orphaned well could pose a risk to the building to be leased. The natural gas well could emit gases, of which the primary constituent is methane, but may also include ethane, propane, butane, pentane, hexane, nitrogen, carbon dioxide, hydrogen and hydrogen sulphide, and other trace gases (contaminants of concern). Methane represents a combustion hazard, carbon dioxide represents an asphyxiation hazard, and all the gases are considered hazardous chemical agents in the Province of Ontario.

As a result of this potential risk, XCG worked with SNC Lavalin Nexacor and Bell to educate them about the risk related to this situation, and with Bell and the owner of the building to develop a soil vapour mitigation plan that would relieve the potential, for attraction and accumulation of soil vapour beneath the building, and the intrusion of vapour contaminants into the building, to prevent human exposure to contaminants, and to ensure that potentially explosive concentrations of contaminants do not accumulate within the building.