Ground investigation and remediation

RSK has decades of experience in responsible geotechnical contracting and geoenvironmental consulting. When combined, this vast experience translates into a unique range of knowledge and capabilities to assess, remediate and prepare land for development. Our multiskilled teams work closely with our clients to use cutting-edge remediation technology and deliver the most environmentally and socially responsible and cost-efficient work for sites of all scales. Our extensive in-house resources, including laboratory testing, drilling machines, engineers and land contamination and remediation specialists, enable us to deliver efficient and accurate results and plans throughout a project.

Geoenvironmental and geotechnical site investigations

We offer multidisciplinary and integrated geotechnical and geoenvironmental ground investigation services. Ground investigations focus specifically on intrusive and non-intrusive geotechnical work, such as boreholes, trial pits and geophysics. They are a specific phase of a wider site investigation, which can include desk studies, detailed walkover surveys and the collation of more general information from the client and third parties. We offer both factual and interpretative reporting. We advise on foundation and retaining wall design, pile design, ground improvement methods, highway construction and general earthworks design. We provide a full suite of geotechnical analyses at our geoenvironmental laboratory. Our in-house site and monitoring teams are fully equipped and certified to conduct multiple types of geotechnical testing to assist clients in avoiding potential pitfalls. We use our in-house ISO/IEC 17025-accredited laboratories and associated approved subcontractor laboratories across the region.

Geoenvironmental consultancy

Our wide-ranging services span phase 1 desk studies, phase 2 intrusive site investigations, remediation options appraisal, design and verification and regulator sign-off. Following desk-based and intrusive works, we provide clients with interpretative reports that assess and advise on long-term risks to human health, controlled waters/water environment, building structures and services, as well as risks associated with asbestos in soil. This is undertaken seamlessly alongside geotechnical investigations and waste assessments.

Soil and groundwater assessments

Soil and groundwater assessments involve evaluating, analysing and monitoring soil and groundwater conditions to determine the quality, contamination levels and potential risks to the environment or human health. Our turnkey service includes planning, managing and interpreting a work programme. A typical programme includes drilling boreholes, installing groundwater monitoring wells and analysing soil and groundwater samples. We maintain long-term groundwater monitoring programmes, interpret environmental risks and liabilities, undertake hydrogeological modelling and design cost-effective management plans and remedial strategies.

Topographical and bathymetric services

Topographical and bathymetric services involve measuring, mapping and analysing land and underwater terrain to create detailed representations of the Earth’s surface and underwater topography. The services are used in various industries for planning, engineering, environmental analysis and infrastructure development. We are highly experienced in carrying out topographic and bathymetric surveys to measure surface elevations above and below water. A topographical survey is an accurate depiction of a property, an area of land or a defined boundary, which is scaled and detailed according to the spatial considerations. We offer various topographic survey options, namely basic surveys of a principal site and comprehensive topographic surveys with all features mapped on an integrated computer-aided design (CAD) plan. Our land surveying team uses the latest survey technologies, such as reflectorless and robotic total stations, together with highly accurate global navigation satellite system (GNSS) receivers, global positioning systems, 3D laser scanners and digital levels to produce topographical maps contoured to show changes in land surface elevation and to pick up physical structures such as buildings, roads and pipelines.

Bathymetric surveying measures and maps the depth of waterbodies, such as oceans, seas, rivers and lakes. They chart the topography of an underwater terrain, similar to how topographic maps depict the contours and features of land surfaces. We use modern digital dual-frequency echo sounders to produce charts of seabeds, riverbeds and lakebeds to provide baseline data on their conditions. The data are crucial for evaluating potential impacts on the environment for proposed developments in marine areas.

Naturally occurring radioactive material assessments and management

Naturally occurring radioactive material (NORM) assessment and management involve processes to evaluate, control and mitigate potential risks associated with materials that contain radioactive elements naturally occurring in the environment. These materials can be found in various industries such as oil and gas exploration and extraction and mining. It is essential to manage NORM carefully because exposure to radioactive materials, even at low levels, can pose risks to human and fauna health. Therefore, industries that deal with materials containing NORM need to conduct regular assessments, follow strict guidelines and employ effective management practices to minimise potential hazards. NORM assessments typically include identification, measurement and analysis and risk evaluation. NORM management involves regulatory compliance, control measures and disposal and treatment. We provide a full life cycle NORM management programme for finding solutions to difficult radiological and environmental hazards. This includes professional support and advice from the development of conceptual survey designs through to radiological surveys and waste management support.

Oil spill response

We provide a wide range of services supporting our clients’ oil spill response capability. Services include developing oil spill response plans and tactical response plans, training and competency development related to oil spill response and coordination within wider emergency and incident response frameworks and the development and delivery of drills and exercise programmes. We provide oil spill response contracting services to our clients across the region if they do not have an in-house response capability. We offer a full range of support services for oil spill response that includes health, safety and environment (HSE) management planning and risk assessment, waste management and contaminated land clean-up and remediation.

Utility mapping

Utility mapping refers to the process of non-intrusively identifying, locating and recording various underground utility lines and infrastructure, such as gas, water, electricity, telecommunications, sewerage and other vital services. This mapping is essential for construction, infrastructure development and maintenance to prevent damage to these services during excavation or construction activities. We provide a comprehensive range of underground mapping services. We conduct precise levelling, positioning and setting-out surveys and prepare detailed geographic information system (GIS)-referenced site-wide utility mapping drawings. We use ground-penetrating radar, electromagnetic detection, conventional cable avoidance and induced electromagnetic mapping techniques. Our survey teams use sonar equipment for shallow marine mapping and resistivity equipment for mapping contamination plumes, pipeline leaks and underground geological structures. Accurate utility mapping is crucial to preventing damage to underground infrastructure during construction projects, reducing the risk of service disruptions, potential hazards to people and associated costs. It aids in better urban planning, maintenance and overall safety by providing a clear understanding of the subsurface infrastructure.

Vacuum excavation

Vacuum excavation is a low-impact digging method that uses high-powered vacuum suction to remove soil or debris from the ground. It is primarily used to expose underground utilities, such as pipes, cables or other sensitive infrastructure, without causing damage. The technique can expose known or suspected live services without any risks to human health. Services remain undamaged and can be mapped and avoided accordingly. Vacuum excavation can also be used to create trenches and for larger excavations where traditional techniques carry the risk of a service strike. We use this technique successfully on operational oil and gas facilities where accurate location and preservation of these services are essential, ensuring the safety of workers and preventing service disruptions.

Waste management

Waste management services involve systematically handling, treating and disposing of various forms of waste in a manner that minimises environmental impact and potential health hazards. These services encompass a wide range of activities aimed at efficiently managing waste, reducing its volume and mitigating its negative effects on the environment. The primary objectives are waste reduction, recycling, proper disposal and the promotion of sustainability. We offer turnkey solutions to our clients’ waste problems. We can help you to determine the different waste types, develop the best methods for collecting them and assess how to recycle, reuse or dispose of them safely with reference to the waste hierarchy process. Effective environmental waste management is critical for preventing pollution, conserving natural resources and maintaining a healthy environment. It also contributes to the circular economy by promoting the reuse and recycling of materials, reducing the need for raw resources and minimising the overall environmental footprint associated with waste generation.

Structural investigation

Construction materials investigations are crucial for maintaining the safety and functionality of structures, ensuring they meet required standards and regulations. By identifying issues early, we can implement appropriate measures to prevent further damage, extend the structure’s lifespan and avoid potential hazards or failures. Reinforced concrete investigations involve the evaluation, examination and analysis of structural elements to assess their condition, integrity and potential issues. Condition assessments are conducted to ensure the safety, durability and performance of concrete structures in various applications, such as buildings, bridges, roads, etc. Key aspects of our concrete structural investigation service offering include condition assessment, compliance testing, material testing, non-destructive testing, root cause analysis, advice on liabilities of deterioration, structural integrity assessment and recommendations on best practice for and implementation of rehabilitation and repair strategies for buildings and structures.


We offer a complete set of integrated remediation services for all contamination issues associated with oil and gas production, processing and transport. We have the combined support, experience and resources to create bespoke remediation solutions for clients. We understand that every problem is unique; as such, we design effective remediation strategies tailored to the client and have the specialists and equipment to see the project through to completion. We provide total contaminated land assessment, management and robust clean-up services. We are one of few companies that can design a project-specific remediation solution, pilot test, install and operate it on-site using in-house specialist equipment and manage every aspect of operation through to full site clean-up and regulatory sign-off. Some of the technologies we employ include dual- and multi-phase extraction, light non-aqueous phase liquid (LNAPL) skimming, soil vapour extraction, chemical oxidation, bioremediation, soil stabilisation, air sparging and biosparging. Bioremediation involving either windrow turning or land farming offers a sustainable and environmentally friendly way to address environmental land contamination issues. Bioremediation is a natural and sustainable process that uses biological organisms to clean-up and remove or neutralise pollutants, contaminants or hazardous substances from the environment. We offer bespoke bioremediation services to treat contaminated soil and help customers avoid expensive waste disposal costs. Our highly trained team uses our fully accredited, integrated geoenvironmental laboratories to classify materials to be remediated and verifies the bioremediation once it is complete.

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Join RSK Biocensus Director Paola Reason for our latest First Thursday Club webinar. 🦇

📅 4th July
⏰ 12:30pm BST

In this webinar, Paola will give an overview of the various guidance, with a focus on the UK Bat Mitigation Guidelines.

She will provide insights on how developers and environmental consultants should work with these documents.

#RSKGroup #BatMitigation #Environmental #Bats

We are excited to announce we will be attending Global Offshore Wind 2024

📅 18th - 19th June
📍 Manchester Central

Join us at stand C10, where our collective of offshore wind-focused businesses will have representatives on hand to discuss effective solutions at every stage of the offshore development life cycle.

We look forward to seeing you there!