Client Spotlight: Matt Ambrusch, Environmental Project Manager for Langan Engineering and Environmental Services

Matt Ambrusch LanganWhen it comes to playing a part in cleaning up the environment, Matt Ambrusch, Environmental Project Manager for Langan Engineering and Environmental Services, Inc., a valued Land Science® client, realizes he has a responsibility to help ensure healthy and safe communities. Focused on designing, implementing, operating, and optimizing remediation systems, Ambrusch feels he is doing his part to help provide sustainable remedies to address today’s contaminated environments. He shares, “No site is ever the same and every day brings a new and interesting challenge.”  During his seven years at Langan, he has progressed from Staff Environmental Engineer, to Senior Staff Environmental Engineer, and now his current position, as Project Manager. Throughout his career, Ambrusch has made significant contributions to the success of his clients and their projects, particularly in the field of pneumatic technologies. He continues, “My personal focus has been on pneumatic solutions that include air sparging, soil vapor extraction, multi-phase extraction, vapor mitigation, and even methane mitigation and collection. I also help lead the charge to develop and grow our two-dimensional and three-dimensional pneumatic modeling practice. These models allow us the ability to better predict system performance under both existing and future site conditions, and ultimately design a more effective and efficient pneumatic-based remedial system.”

Like many of his peers who work and thrive in the environmental remediation industry, Ambrusch’s interest in the environment began early in life. He continues, “What started out as a desire to always be outside as a kid, grew into a passion for environmental science after taking an environmental studies course during my senior year of high school. I also had an aptitude for math, and recognized that with the applicable college major, a career in environmental engineering just made sense.”  His university studies culminated with a BS in Bioenvironmental Engineering from Rutgers University and later an MBA in Strategy and Leadership from Rutgers Business School. He is also a licensed professional engineer in the State of New Jersey. When he joined Langan early in his career, it did not take long for Ambrusch to develop an appreciation for the firm’s high level of expertise and client service, and the goals that Langan has set for itself. He shares, “Langan has always been focused on technical excellence, practical experience, and client responsiveness. Whatever we do as a company, these values continue to be paramount to our success.  As national and state regulations become more stringent, and new contaminants of concern come into focus, we look to position ourselves effectively so that we can continue to provide our clients innovative, proven, and cost-efficient solutions.  This includes continuing to expand our landfill redevelopment practice. As a team, we are also working on expanding our in-house treatability study and pilot test capabilities.”

When it comes to working with Land Science®, Ambrusch appreciates the industry-leading solutions and rapid response he receives on a consistent basis. “Simply put,” he says, “Land Science® provides cutting- edge technologies and is extremely responsive.” Ambrusch continues, “I work on a lot of redevelopment projects requiring vapor mitigation – these projects are fast paced and require effective cost-competitive solutions.  Land Science® understand the needs required with these types of projects and continues to innovate in an effort to make vapor mitigation products more effective and cost efficient.”  He also appreciates the level of service and customization offered by Land Science®. He adds, “I am heavily involved in the design and implementation of vapor mitigation systems for redevelopment projects.  As such, we often look to Land Science® for innovative vapor barrier materials or application methods that fit the site-specific needs of the project.”

Asked what he thinks the future holds for environmental remediation, Ambrusch feels a focus on sustainable remedies is where the industry is heading. He shares, “Other than emerging contaminants, which everyone is talking about, I see a push for more sustainable remedies.” Ambrusch goes on to say, “The intent of effective remediation is to improve human health and the environment, and we need to be aware of the potential negative impacts the remedial activities we are implementing on one site may have on another. We also need to consider the economical and societal pros and cons of a proposed remedial strategy, both on and offsite.”

Residing in Rockaway, New Jersey with his wife Riley, over the years Ambrusch has worked out of Langan’s Lawrenceville and Elmwood Park (now Parsippany NJ) offices. In his free time, he enjoys the outdoors, and is an avid golfer and snowboarder. He also finds time to provide his expertise to assist the Sustainable Remediation Forum (SURF) and serves as the current President. When asked what he enjoys most about his work, he points to the difference he can make for both our planet and those of us who inhabit it. He shares, “I get a great deal of satisfaction designing and implementing a remedial or mitigation system and see it positively impact the environment.”

Land Science® is proud to have Matt Ambrusch, Environmental Project Manager for Langan Engineering and Environmental Services, Inc., as a valued client and partner in environmental remediation, and appreciates his expertise and ongoing efforts in providing successful remediation outcomes for Land Science® and its clients.

Client Spotlight: Dan Matz, Environmental Engineer at Bunnell Lammons Engineering, Inc.

Dan Matz Bunnell LammonsFor Dan Matz, a career in environmental remediation provides the ideal combination of variety and pace to keep him both energized and challenged. As an Environmental Engineer at Bunnell Lammons Engineering, Inc., a leading environmental and geotechnical engineering firm and valued Land Science® client, Matz plays a key role in a broad range of the firm’s environmental services. “My primary responsibilities are Phase I and Phase II Environmental Site Assessments and Brownfield redevelopment projects,” he shares. “We commonly call these our ‘Due Diligence Services’ because they are designed to better inform clients about a property prior to the acquisition of it.”  The diversity of his work, along with the demands of short due diligence periods can be challenging, but that’s just what keeps Matz moving at full speed. He shares, “Working in the field of environmental remediation is very gratifying.”

As someone with a love for the outdoors since childhood, Matz wasn’t surprised when that passion led him to focus his university studies in environmental engineering, where he earned his B.S. in Physics of the Environment at Furman University.  He continues, “I developed my own major, and tailored it toward an engineering degree. My degree was a combination of physics, math, and environmental science.”  He followed his undergraduate degree by earning a Master of Engineering in Environmental Engineering and Science from Clemson University. He then joined Bunnell Lammons Engineering, Inc., where he’s served since 2008, first as an Environmental Engineering Associate before being promoted to Environmental Engineer.

To stay current with industry trends and technology, he attends multiple conferences per year, and participates in webinar trainings and “lunch and learns” at the office. He adds, “I try to focus my continuing education on vapor migration, groundwater and vapor remedial techniques, and Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS/PFOAs) .”  Suffice to say, he thoroughly enjoys what he’s doing, and takes pride in knowing he’s making a positive impact in the community. He shares, “I like the quick turnaround time on projects. When environmental concerns arise, it is exciting to determine the best solution for the client to move forward with the transaction, whether it is a Brownfields agreement with the state or some other avenue of environmental protection. It is rewarding to work on real world environmental problems and help my clients determine solutions to mitigate risk, keeping in mind their project schedule and budget.”

When it comes to working with Land Science®, Matz appreciates the timely response and level of expertise he receives. He shares, “Land Science® is responsive. You ask a question of a Project Manager and they answer it quickly and thoroughly. They provide support on VI design, install, etc., which makes my job as an engineer easier in support of my clients. They are industry leaders and have the solutions to the problems we face.” He currently has four projects with Land Science®– two Retro-Coat™ applications and two Geo-Seal® applications.  “The support and assistance they have provided on each of these projects is remarkable, and we have a good working relationship with them,” he says. About specific Land Science® products and solutions, he says Geo-Seal®, Retro-Coat™, and Vapor-Vent are all used in various ways, depending on the site requirements.

When asked about the future goals of Bunnell Lammons Engineering, Inc., Matz says continued growth and providing superior service are always at the top. Currently, the firm has more than 125 employees between its various divisions: environmental engineering and consulting, geotechnical engineering, construction materials testing, transportation services, and solid waste services.

Residing in the Greenville/Spartanburg, South Carolina area, where he works out of the company’s Greenville office, Matz and his wife Laura, have two young children, Ryan, age 4, and Erin, six months. In his free time, Dan can be found out on the nearby roads, training for his next half marathon or triathlon. Additionally, Dan and his family enjoy rooting on their favorite football team, the Clemson Tigers.

When asked what he sees the future holds for environmental remediation, he says PFAs and PFOAs are garnering a great deal of attention. He continues, “There is a lot of talk about these emerging contaminants, but we will see where it goes. If more regulatory agencies start to develop action levels, it could become a BIG issue in years to come. The science is relatively new, and there are a great deal of discoveries to come in future.”

And what is it he likes most about his work? “Helping clients solve their environmental problems and allowing them to purchase and redevelop properties that otherwise might sit vacant and underutilized.”

When prompted to share how he would encourage others to join in his field of study, he again points out the quick cadence his work entails, and the satisfaction of helping clients. He concludes, “I tell people interested in the field the industry is a fun, fast paced work environment. It is exciting to work on a variety of projects and provide clients with solutions.”

Land Science is proud to have Dan Matz, an Environmental Engineer at Bunnell Lammons Engineering, Inc., as a valued client and partner in environmental remediation, and appreciates his expertise and thorough approach in providing successful remediation outcomes for Land Science and its clients.

EnviroSouth

Client Spotlight: Thomas Donn, Senior President of EnviroSouth

Thomas Donn of EnviroSouthWhen Thomas Donn decided to launch his own environmental consulting business in March of 2001, his primary goal was to provide practical solutions to emerging environmental challenges. His objective, along with his then business partner, was to grow a firm that could clearly explain complex technical and regulatory issues in a manner that was easily understandable to a wide range of clients. They also wanted to cement and deliver on their mantra of, “on budget, on time, and no surprises”, as a way to firmly differentiate themselves from other environmental remediation firms. Fast forward to today, and it is clear Donn has successfully grown and positioned EnviroSouth, a valued Land Science® and REGENESIS client, into a leading environmental consulting company. Headquartered in Greeneville, SC, EnviroSouth offers its clients an array of services that include soil and groundwater remediation, real estate environmental site assessment, soil and groundwater contamination assessment, Brownfields property restoration, and other environmental related services. Donn shares, “We have become successful in setting ourselves apart from the competition. And that’s why many of our clients rely on EnviroSouth environmental consultants year after year for all their environmental needs.”

As the founder, President, and Principal Hydrogeologist of EnviroSouth, Donn’s day-to-day responsibilities include advising clients on the technical and regulatory options related to purchasing and remediating commercial and industrial Brownfield properties, as well as troubleshooting projects to ensure the outcome matches client expectations and passes through the regulatory approval process. When asked what he enjoys most about his work, he points to the satisfaction of seeing properties converted into reusable sites, suitable for redevelopment. He continues, “I appreciate being part of the vibrant growth and remediation of a Brownfield site as a key advisor and facilitator.” Donn continues,  “Transforming blighted properties that are often eyesores, into productive and attractive facilities which bring jobs to communities is very gratifying. I also enjoy developing our professional staff of geologists, engineers, and environmental scientists, since it helps them become more independent and confident in their abilities, translating to their success on projects they manage.” Prior to starting EnviroSouth, Donn gained valuable experience in the environmental remediation industry, serving in several key positions, including Geologist, Hydrogeologist, and Environmental Services Department Manager, as well as Branch Manager for a 27-person branch office, where he performed environmental consulting, ecological services, geotechnical engineering and construction materials testing.

Prior to beginning his professional career, he earned a B.S. in Geology from the University at Buffalo and a M.S. in Geology from Miami (Ohio) University.  He shares, “I chose a career in environmental sciences because I had a keen interest in geology and a desire to provide effective and cost-conscious solutions to help contribute to cleaning up our planet.”  To stay current with industry trends and the latest technology, Donn often attends technical conferences to maintain familiarity with new remediation methods, as well as refinements of design and field techniques. In addition, he occasionally serves as an expert witness, and has authored several white papers and articles for publication.

When it comes to working with Land Science, Donn says he appreciates their advanced experience and responsiveness. He continues, “Land Science provides good technical resources and they are proactive to our requests for quotes. They also offer excellent customer service and assistance with our logistical needs.  We recently completed a project with them on a former textile mill that was redeveloped.  They were very helpful in ensuring the project was a success , including coordinating with installation contractors.” The project included the installation of Geo-Seal® and Vapor-Vent™. He explains, “The project was a Brownfield redevelopment of a long-shuttered textile mill in South Carolina.  Based on the poor condition of the concrete and wood floor, the client decided to remove the existing floor, so it provided a perfect opportunity to install a top of the line vapor barrier, such as Geo-Seal®, to prevent TCE in the shallow soils from entering the renovated building.  The installation was inspected thoroughly by EnviroSouth’s own in-house LandScience® certified inspector.  Subsequent testing showed the indoor air was free of TCE, and the roof vent showed elevated TCE concentrations as evidence that the vapor vents were doing their job as planned.”

Residing in Greeneville, SC, outside of work Donn enjoys wilderness backpacking trips, especially to his favorite destination in Glacier National Park.  He shares, “Glacier is the perfect place for getting away from it all with no cell phone coverage!  There is also the rush of knowing that around any corner you could come across a bull moose or an angry mama grizzly!” He has also enjoyed volunteering at a local YMCA, where he holds a Board position, and serves on the March of Dimes Real Estate Executive Committee for his local chapter. When asked what he sees the future holds for environmental remediation, Donn points to an increased emphasis on risk assessment as a growth area. He continues, “I believe the trend toward performing remediation based on risk assessment is here to stay.  Remediating sites that have a likelihood of adversely impacting human or environmental receptors just makes good sense.  The recent trend of looking much closer at and preventing the presence of potentially harmful vapors inside buildings is one of the most logical and cost-effective types of remediation we can provide.  For the past few decades, environmental regulators were requiring millions upon millions of dollars to be spent on cleaning up soil and groundwater, but largely ignored the effects of breathing harmful vapors.  This new awareness of evaluating vapors seems obvious now, but it was just a matter of the awareness of the environmental regulators and good technical practitioners to bring the science to this point.”  And what advice would he offer to those considering a career in the environmental remediation industry?  He concludes, “I would suggest becoming involved with an environmental services company early on, perhaps as an intern. We have had several summer interns from Clemson University’s highly regarded Environmental Engineering program.  This provides them the real-life aspects of environmental consulting work, especially working outside in the field.”

Land Science is proud to have Tom Donn, President and Principal Hydrogeologist at EnviroSouth, as a valued client and partner in environmental remediation, and appreciates his technical experience and diverse contributions in providing successful remediation outcomes for Land Science® and its clients.

Client Spotlight: Sigrida Reinis, PhD, PE, Associate at Langan

Ask Sigrida Reinis, Ph.D., what she likes most about her work, and she’ll likely respond by saying she enjoys the challenge of addressing complex environmental remediation projects, much like a modern day detective. It’s just one reason Reinis, an Associate at Langan Engineering and Environmental Services, Inc., a leader in integrated land development engineering and a valued REGENESIS/Land Science client, looks forward to her work. Shares Reinis, “I like solving mysteries, and in the environmental engineering world, we are often confronted with the unexpected – weird data, odd trends, and bizarre existing site conditions, to name just a few. Figuring out how the dots are connected or how to make the best of a less than perfect situation is what makes the work both interesting and engaging.” The day-to-day challenges associated in the cleanup of various sites, coupled with the continued growth of Langan Engineering and Environmental Services are, in part, why Reinis has continued to enjoy her role with the Langan team for more than 20 years. She also appreciates the diversity in her work that contributes to a busy, ongoing schedule of activities. She continues, “At any given time, I am serving as Project Manager for up to a dozen projects, most of which are related either to post-closure landfill redevelopment or gas/vapor intrusion mitigation for existing or new buildings.”

For Reinis, choosing a career in environmental remediation began upon graduation from the University of California at Berkeley, where she received her B.S. in Civil Engineering. She continues, “When I graduated with my B.S. from Cal Berkeley in 1984, the Federal Superfund program was just getting off the ground, and I had the great fortune of being hired by Dr. Don Treadwell, a geotechnical engineer who was transitioning himself and his firm (Geomatrix Consultants Inc.) into the new field of environmental engineering.” Reinis also added a Master’s in Civil Engineering, followed by her Ph.D. in Civil Engineering, both of which were also earned at the University of California at Berkeley. To stay abreast of current trends and technologies in her field, Reinis takes advantage of an extensive range of in-house continuing education and training offered through Langan Engineering and Environmental Services. She also participates in external education and training opportunities, and for the past few years has served as a member of the Interstate Technology Regulatory Council (ITRC) Methane Detection Task Force. In her free time, Reinis enjoys a variety of outdoor activities with her wife, Tracy. She shares, “We both enjoy cycling, running, hiking, and all forms of skiing – cross-country, downhill, and telemark. I’m also a certified professional cross-country ski instructor and am a certified cycling coach.” In addition, Reinis volunteers with local charities and participates in fundraising for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Foundation through their Team In Training and Light the Night programs. She adds, “More recently, I have served as volunteer for AIDS/Lifecycle, a 7-day, 545-mile bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles that benefits the San Francisco AIDS Foundation and the Los Angeles LGBT Center.”

When asked which Land Science products she prefers, Reinis points to Geo-Seal® and Retro-Coat™, and offers up a few examples where she and her team have had success. She shares, “The Land Science products that I am most familiar with are the sub-slab gas/vapor barrier membrane Geo-Seal® and the top-of-slab gas/vapor barrier membrane Retro-Coat™. I am currently managing three very different projects that all involve the application of Retro-Coat™. One is an empty warehouse on a former Naval Air Station that is being converted into a high-tech manufacturing space, and a second is an office building on a previously closed landfill that, when originally constructed in the mid-1980s, was equipped with a sub-slab venting system but not a gas barrier membrane. The third is a relatively new building that, despite being equipped with a sub-slab venting system and gas barrier membrane, is being treated with Retro-Coat™ in localized areas to mitigate potential vapor intrusion while we continue to search for the root cause of elevated levels of VOCs in indoor air, which we believe are linked to an indoor source.” When asked what she feels the future holds for environmental remediation, Reinis feels there is room for improvement in the toxicological space. She adds, “Vapor intrusion has been an active area of research and engineering for well over a decade, but the toxicological research, particularly involving the inhalation exposure route, is still lagging. Consequently, regulations and guidance remain subject to change and debate.” When asked about the most demanding aspect of her work, she quickly refers to tight deadlines. “It’s a challenge when asked to produce a complete report from scratch in one day or less,” she says. “The redevelopment world moves at an incredibly fast pace, especially when the real estate market is booming.”

When it comes to addressing how her industry has evolved over the years, Reinis feels there are always new contaminants to challenge environmental professionals. She concludes, “There is always a new “emerging” contaminant – there was dioxin, then MTBE, now PFOA and PFOS and 1,4-dioxane – and always someone looking for a technical or scientific solution to old or new problems. The industry is constantly evolving, but generally for the better.”

REGENESIS is proud to have Sigrida Reinis, an Associate at Langan Engineering and Environmental Services, Inc., as a valued client and partner in environmental remediation, and appreciates her vast experience and commitment to providing successful remediation outcomes for Land Science and its clients.