Development and validation of a sampling strategy to assess the environmental quality of (reusable) soil

The decision on reuse, treatment or landfilling of soil largely depends on the environmental quality of the soil. The exact contaminant concentrations are therefore essential to determine the (final) destination of soil stockpiles. This paper focuses on the development and validation of technical procedures to accurately determine the mean contaminant concentration in soil stockpiles.

The challenge derives from the fact that both organic and inorganic contaminants are distributed heterogeneously over the soil stockpile. Technical procedures involve sampling, sample pre-treatment and chemical analysis. Since chemical analysis procedures are well developed and standardised, we focussed on the sampling process itself and the sample pre-treatment.