Groundwater Organic Contaminant Pollution and Remediation



To provide the organic contaminant hydrogeological knowledge base that will underpin potential future professional activity in the field of groundwater organic contaminant remediation.


Pollution of groundwater by organic contaminants remains a key driver of exceedingly expensive contaminated land and groundwater investigation and remediation efforts.

This module seeks to provide the organic contaminant hydrogeological knowledge base that will underpin a student's potential future professional activity in this field.

The module will cover:

  • Contaminant source terms
  • Contextual toxicology and environmental standards and legislation
  • Organic contaminant phase partitioning to air, water, solids
  • Conceptual models of contaminant migration
  • Processes of sorption, chemical reaction, biodegradation
  • NAPL multi-phase flow

These will be illustrated by contaminant case studies throughout. Student learning will be underpinned by set calculation problem sheets.

These theoretical aspects will underpin more industry applied/research-based subsequent learning on contaminated land/groundwater legislative frameworks, groundwater; groundwater risk assessment (industry-led ConSim workshop), site investigation and groundwater monitoring practice and groundwater remediation options.

Remediation will predominantly focus on organic contaminants, but also include some discussion of related fields of metals - hydrochemistry, radiological and microbiological contaminant. Remediation will cover a range of representative modern technologies as well as groundwater protection initiatives and relevant waste disposal practice.


  • Examination
  • Coursework

Key skills

  • Organic contaminant hydrogeology
  • Remediation application
  • Short technical report writing
  • Use of model software
  • Undertaking of organic contaminant chemistry based calculations