Environmental Services

Whether your mission is to renovate or demolish existing structures, ensure a healthy and safe work environment, comply with local, state and federal regulations, or address concerns of potential exposure to hazardous materials, VERTEX can help you identify, implement, and achieve your goals in a timely and cost effective manner.

 

Asbestos & Lead-Based Paint Consulting

VERTEX’s Senior Management have been involved in asbestos and lead-based paint consulting since the 1980s when it all began. Our licensed inspectors, designers, project monitors, and management planners maintain the highest level of expertise and are instrumental in completing the consulting activities in a cost effective and timely matter.  Our goal is to always assist client’s in interpreting specific local, state and federal regulations associated with Asbestos and Lead-based paint and our technical staff ensure that the asbestos and/or lead projects are completed in compliance with specific state requirements, NESHAPs, AHERA, HUD, USEPA RRP, whether it’s conducting a pre-renovation survey of a structure or monitoring abatement activities through completion. VERTEX can assist the client with all aspects of Asbestos and Lead-based paint consulting including: Asbestos/lead surveys, preparation of Operation and Management (O&M) plans, abatement design, specification preparation, abatement cost estimates, contractor bid solicitation, abatement project monitoring, abatement clearance inspections/sampling, and preparation of closeout documentation.

PCB Remediation and Consulting

VERTEX’s technical staff can assist clients with identifying potential Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCB) containing materials through sampling.  Depending on the extent of PCB containing materials as well as project scheduling, and ultimate project goals (renovation, demolition, change in use), VERTEX will consult with the client to determine the most cost-effective and timely approach to remediate the PCB waste. Our work is always performed in accordance with United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations, no matter if it involves conducting Self Implementing Plan (SIP), Performance Based Remediation, or Risk Based Remediation.  VERTEX can also assist the client in navigating and interpreting specific regulations associated with testing, handling and disposing of PCB waste and act as a liaison between the client and the EPA regulators.

Indoor Air Quality Assessments

VERTEX’s expertise and highly skilled Certified Industrial Hygienists (CIHs), Certified Indoor Environmentalists (CIEs), and other technical staff coupled with our extensive knowledge of building sciences lend us the capability to develop specific assessment protocols to assist clients in determining the non-specific pollutant sources typically associated with Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) concerns. VERTEX designs each IAQ assessment on a case-by-case basis as no two IAQ issues are alike. Depending on the complexity of the IAQ concerns, VERTEX has the ability to utilize our in-house professional engineers, mechanical engineers, and HVAC experts to assess all aspects of a buildings functionality such as construction design, ventilation, intake and exhaust air ratios. Once suspected sources of the IAQ concerns are identified, VERTEX can assist the client with the implementation of measures to mitigate adverse sources and improve IAQ.

Certified Industrial Hygiene Consulting

Expertise and experience of VERTEX’s Certified Industrial Hygienists (CIHs) and other technical staff allow us to anticipate, recognize, evaluate, and control workplace conditions that may cause workers’ injury or illness. VERTEX’s expert staff uses environmental monitoring and analytical methods to detect the extent of worker exposure and employ engineering, work practice controls, and other methods to control potential health hazards.

Water Intrusion/Mold Growth

VERTEX’s Certified Industrial Hygienists (CIHs), Certified Microbial Consultants (CMC), Certified Indoor Environmentalists (CIEs), and other technical staff have extensive experience with conducting cause and origin investigations associated with water intrusion and microbial issues in the indoor environment.  VERTEX’s Water Intrusion/Mold investigation consulting services can assist clients with conducting: Cause and Origin assessments; Mold investigation; Moisture mapping; Bioaerosol sampling; Remedial protocol preparation; Contractor bid solicitations; Remedial monitoring; and Post remediation verification sampling.

Water Intrusion/Mold O&M Planning and Training

VERTEX has extensive experience preparing Water Intrusion/Mold Management Plans and providing Mold Awareness training on a national basis. VERTEX can prepare these plans for single structures, multi-building complexes, as well corporate plans that are prepared specific to geographical areas. VERTEX’s Water Intrusion/Mold Plans and training can be prepared to specific property types whether it’s owned or leased including: commercial, retail, office, hospitality, healthcare, hospitals, schools/universities, industrial, multi-family residential and more.

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Key Personnel

Thomas Koch

Thomas Koch, CIH, MEPM

Vice President, Industrial Hygiene & EHS Services

Thomas Koch has a dynamic background in the fields of Industrial Hygiene and Environmental Health & Safety, having been employed over 25 years in industry and private practice. Mr. Koch is a Certified Industrial Hygienist with a Master’s Degree in Environmental Policy and Management. Prior to joining VERTEX, Mr. Koch was President of Koch Environmental Health, Inc., specializing in the comprehensive fields of Industrial Hygiene and Environmental Safety and Health. Mr. Koch provides expertise in comprehensive industrial hygiene, regulatory compliance including OSHA and EPA program compliance, HAZWOPER program implementation, asbestos, hazardous waste, EHS training programs, and construction safety. As an expert, Mr. Koch has provided deposition testimony and written defense response reports. 

Erik Borgesen

Erik Borgesen, CMC

Executive Vice President, Industrial Hygiene & Building Sciences

As Executive Vice President of the Industrial Hygiene & Building Sciences sector of VERTEX, Erik Borgesen oversees all projects pertaining to asbestos, indoor air quality, industrial hygiene, lead-based paint, mold/water intrusion, and cooling tower and domestic (potable) water management programs and plans. Specific expertise includes: asbestos, industrial hygiene, indoor air quality, construction defect investigations, water intrusion/mold investigations, bio-aerosol sampling, HVAC assessment, emergency response actions, risk assessment, epidemiology, remedial work plan preparation and remedial oversight. Mr. Borgesen has extensive experience in the environmental industry including: coordination and performance of Environmental Audits, Hazardous Materials Building Inspections, Industrial Hygiene Investigations, and Indoor Air Quality Studies.

Michael Plainte

Michael Plainte

Vice President, General Manager

Michael Plainte has over 27 years of experience in the environmental industry and currently serves as a Vice President and General Manager for VERTEX in the Mid-Atlantic Region. Mr. Plainte is responsible for business development and technical oversight for VERTEX’s more complex environmental projects, specializing in industrial hygiene and building science related projects. His experience includes extensive environmental management of large-scale asbestos site assessment and remediation programs, as well as numerous environmental site assessments in support of due diligence, asset management, and insurance for a host of nationally based equity and development clients.

Mr. Plainte is currently spearheading VERTEX’s Water Management Program for CMS (Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services) certified Clients to reduce the risk of Legionella growth and other waterborne pathogens (WBP) in buildings as mandated in current guidelines. 

Don Heim

Don Heim

Vice President, Air Quality

Don Heim is the Vice President for the Air Quality services division. Mr. Heim has extensive experience in the environmental industry including: coordination and performance of Environmental Audits, Hazardous Materials Building Inspections, Indoor Air Quality Studies and Asbestos Air Monitoring. He has a working knowledge of environmental regulations and a specialty in asbestos throughout all U.S. jurisdictions. Mr. Heim has successfully coordinated, managed and/or performed environmental consulting services associated with “turn-key” projects in the renovation of high-rise office buildings, financial institutions, healthcare facilities, universities, industrial sites and retail shopping centers.

News

VERTEX Wins 2019 WebAward

September 10, 2019

VERTEX is proud to be named the 2019 Best Environmental Website by Web Marketing Association. Now in its 17th year, the WebAward program is the longest running annual website award competition dedicated to naming the best websites in 96 industries while setting the standard of excellence for all website development. The WebAwards are recognized as the…

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VERTEX's Bill McConnell and Mark Degenaars to Present at Pearlman 2019

September 3, 2019

VERTEX’s Bill McConnell, CEO, and Mark Degenaars, Managing Director of Construction Services, are presenting at the 26th Annual Pearlman Conference in Woodinville, WA on September 5th, 2019. Bill will be presenting on “Privilege Issues in the Surety’s Initial Claim Investigation” and Mark will be presenting on “Thinking Outside the Box: Utilizing a Surety’s Own Account…

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VERTEX’s CEO, Bill McConnell, Recognized in Columbia University’s Global Leaders in Construction Management Industry Network

August 22, 2019

VERTEX is a strong believer in continuous learning. In fact, it’s part of our core values and is practiced by many of VERTEX’s team. Take, for example, Bill McConnell, CEO, who has been working towards his Doctor of Philosophy degree in Civil Engineering. One of Bill’s professors, Dr. Ibrahim Odeh, is also the founder of…

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VERTEX's Henry Stormer Receives Motor Vehicle Fire Credential

August 15, 2019

Henry Stormer, National Fire Investigation Division Manager for VERTEX, was recently awarded the Certified Motor Vehicle Fire Investigator credential, IAAI-CFI (V). The International Association of Arson Investigators (IAAI) is an international professional association of more than 9,000 fire investigation professionals. The IAAI Specialized Program Credential Endorsement programs serve to provide a pathway for recognition as…

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VERTEX Gets Demo of Robotics from 'Sister Bots'

August 9, 2019

Sister Bots at VERTEX, August 9, 2019 VERTEX’s Denver office recently had an inspiring demonstration on how robotics is creating innovative thinkers when our favorite First Lego League (FLL) robotics team, Sister Bots, came to the office to show us some solutions from Artificial Intelligence (AI). The Sister Bots are comprised of our own Claire…

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Blog

Spring Brings Indoor Air Quality Issues

June 5, 2019

As facilities throughout the northeast move from the cold winter weather into warmer spring and summer months, a host of indoor air quality (IAQ) issues can develop as heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems switch from the heating seasons to the cooling seasons. How Seasonal Changes Affect Indoor Air Quality One of the primary…

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Crystalline Silica Exposure - Regulations and Risks

May 28, 2019

OSHA Standard for Silica Exposure and Controls Did you know that in March of 2016, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published a final rule regulating occupational exposure to respirable crystalline silica? The previous OSHA standard for silica exposure and controls was published in 1971 and had not been updated or revised since.  What…

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High Rising Radon - Why the upper floors aren’t necessarily safe

November 27, 2018

What is radon? It is difficult to think about something that you cannot see, smell, or taste; but in the case of radon, out of sight should not mean out of mind. Radon is a naturally occurring radioactive gas, which results from the decay of uranium. When you think about a healthy lifestyle, the terms…

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Due Diligence for Federal Agency Lending - Property Condition and Environmental Assessments

October 2, 2018

VERTEX has been providing Due Diligence services for real estate transactions since 1995. As we continue to grow nationally, VERTEX has developed a core team of engineers, architects, construction professionals and scientists to provide property condition assessments and environmental assessments for the federal multifamily housing agencies – Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and HUD Lean. The…

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2018 Hurricane Season

September 11, 2018

NOAA’s 2018 hurricane outlook was published in May, just before the official start of the hurricane season. Neil Jacobs, the assistant secretary of commerce for environmental prediction and observation, says that NOAA predicts between 10 and 16 named storms, with sustained winds of 39 mph or higher. The agency expects five to nine hurricanes, which have…

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