Lancaster County Solid Waste Management Authority

Lancaster County, PA

Creswell Soil and Borrow Project Parcels 4 and 5

Natural Resource Investigations

Lancaster County Solid Waste Management Authority (LCSWMA) plans to permit a soil borrow area to accommodate waste disposal operations at their properties. As part of the soil borrow permitting project, ARM completed and managed several environmental resource tasks to successfully document existing conditions and receive environmental clearances allowing the project to proceed. ARM conducted wetland delineation and functional assessments, completed threatened and endangered species investigations, evaluated stream conditions and coordinated cultural resource investigations. The documentation for each of the resource tasks is included in the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection Bureau of Waste’s Permit Modification Application.

Wetland Delineation

ARM scientists conducted a field investigation within approximately 101 acres to assess existing wetlands located within and adjacent to a proposed soil borrow project area. Three wetlands were identified adjacent to the soil borrow area. One wetland was greater than 5 acres in size and the other wetlands were less than 0.2 acre in size. The wetlands were identified in accordance with the protocols and procedures outlined in the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Corps of Engineers Wetland Delineation Manual (1987). An assessment was performed to evaluate wetland functions and values to provide support documentation during agency reviews associated with the PADEP Bureau of Waste’s Permit Modification Application. The wetland investigation and functional assessment were documented in a Wetland Identification Delineation and Functional Assessment Report. Wetlands were delineated early in the project engineering phase and were successfully avoided, while meeting the client’s soil borrow needs.

Threatened and Endangered Species Evaluation

A threatened and endangered species evaluation was conducted by first determining if potential species conflicts were present and then by conducting specific surveys for species of concern. The initial review was conducted through use of the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (PADCNR) on-line Environmental Review Tool. The on-line search revealed that several species of concern, including the bog turtle, red bellied turtle and wild oat were known to exist within the vicinity of the project. As a result coordination was required with the agencies having jurisdiction over the species and included the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, and PADCNR. ARM coordinated and participated in a Phase II survey and a Phase III trapping survey for the bog turtle. ARM coordinated the red-bellied turtle evaluation. ARM conducted the habitat suitability survey for the wild oat. Clearances were received by the resource agencies for each of the three species.

Stream Survey

The soil borrow area is within the watershed of Fisherman Run, which is a tributary to the Susquehanna River. Fisherman Run will not be directly impacted by the soil borrow project. An assessment of Fisherman Run was conducted to assess in-stream biological, chemical and physical characteristics of the watercourse and evaluate and watershed features. The stream survey followed the PADEP’s Assessment Methodology for riffle/run freestone streams. A macroinvertebrate survey was conducted by ARM biologists to evaluate stream health based upon the benthic community. In-situ water quality parameters (i.e. pH, dissolved oxygen, temperature, and specific conductivity) were also assessed during the survey. Stream flow was also taken during the survey and continued to be monitored on a monthly basis.

Archaeology Investigation

ARM conducted initial consultation with the Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission (PHMC) to determine the potential presence for cultural resources. A Phase I Archaeology Survey was required. The Phase I investigation was conducted using two different approaches to save the client cost associated with the work effort. A shovel testing method was used at Parcel 5. The plow method is planned for Parcel 4 under a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) between LCSWMA and the PHMC. ARM participated in a PHMC meeting to develop the MOA.