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Basic Concepts of Contaminant Sorption at Hazardous Waste Sites

One of the major issues of concern to the Forum is the transport and fate of contaminants in soil and ground water as related to subsurface remediation. Processes which influence the behavior of contaminants in the subsurface must be considered both in evaluating the potential for movement as well as in designing remediation activities at hazardous waste sites. Such factors not only tend to regulate the mobility of contaminants, but also their form and stability. Sorption is often the paramount process controlling the behavior of contaminants in the subsurface. This paper summarizes the basic concepts of sorption in soil and ground water with emphasis on nonpolar organic contaminants.

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