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Les travaux d’assainissement de Wetteren ont commencé

Wetteren remediation works started

Antwerp, 21 May 2013 – DEC, the environmental subsidiary of DEME (Dredging, Environmental and Marine Engineering), has recently started implementing the remediation and management measures established for the calamity zone in Wetteren, where the soil was contaminated with acrylonitrile following a serious train accident. The highly delicate operation is carried out by order of SNCB Holding (Infrabel) in accordance with the strictest safety requirements.


The required management measures were established in joint consultation between Infrabel, OVAM, Ecorem and the Belgian Pedological Services.

The works involve complete remediation of the southern longitudinal canal and the Grote Vijverbeek along a stretch of 300 and 150 metres, respectively. The soil and the sludge will be excavated and transported to the soil recycling centre GRC at Kallo in specially equipped and completely sealed off trucks.

The residential area being the first priority, works will commence along the western side.

As an additional management measure, horizontal drainage collectors will be placed north and south of the railway. Horizontal drains will extract the groundwater from the soil. A mobile water treatment unit installed on site will remediate the water extracted from the drains. In preparation of the final soil remediation concept, the latter management measure will also limit further spreading of the contamination.

About DEC

DEME Environmental Contractors (DEC) was founded in 2000, when the parent company DEME consolidated a series of environmental companies that had been set up during the 1980s. DEC has seen rapid growth, both in Belgium and abroad, performing important contracts in, for instance, London: the remediation of the London Olympics site; the port of Antwerp: the innovative project for sludge recycling, better known as "Amoras"; Dublin and Chesterfield: remediation of the former gasworks sites. The company is also active in Sweden – and has an office in Malmö – since 2003, when a pioneer project was launched in Hultsfred, involving the use of the sectional environmental dredger ‘Pixie’ to clean up two lakes contaminated with mercury. During Sweden's largest environmental remediation project EKA-Bengtsfors, DEC cleaned up mercury and dioxins from polluted soil. DEC is currently remediating the heavily contaminated soil of a fjord in Valdemarsvik.

About DEME

The Belgian dredging, hydraulic engineering and environmental group DEME has earned itself a prominent position on the world market in a few highly specialist and complex hydraulic disciplines. Having started out with dredging operations and reclamation, the group diversified into hydraulic projects at sea, services to oil and gas companies, the installation of offshore wind farms, environmental activities such as soil remediation and sludge recycling, and revalidation of brownfields and wreck clearance. Its multi-disciplinary know-how and experience, project synergies and integrated business structure allowed DEME to grow into a global solutions provider. The Group owns one of the most modern, high-tech and versatile fleets for dredging and hydraulic engineering activities. DEME employs more than 4,200 people. In 2012 the Group realised a turnover of EUR 1.915 billion.


Ann Wittemans - Communication Manager T +32 3 210 67 94 - M +32 470 88 04 71 -

Jan Zwaenepoel - T +32 3 570 90 34 -

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