AquaBlok Utilized In ENR California's Best Project To Enable Rehabilitation Of Historic Los Angeles Lake


The manufacturing company's bentonite-based sealing materials were used to isolate contaminated sediment in the Machado Lake Ecosystem Rehabilitation Project.

AquaBlok, Ltd. is excited to announce the application of their materials in the Machado Lake Ecosystem Rehabilitation Project, acknowledged as one of Engineering News-Record (ENR) California’s Best Projects of 2018. The manufacturing company’s namesake, bentonite-based sealing material was used to sequester contaminated sediment at the historic Los Angeles lake.

AquaBlok was selected for this project, as well as many other contaminated sediment remediation applications, because of its ability to:

  • Minimize removal volumes (with all associated costs)

  • Provide 100% clean surface restoration, which eliminates risks associated with residual contamination

  • Reduce risk of recontamination from other sources, such as upland seep zones

  • According to the Water Quality Control Board, Machado Lake was an impaired water body for trash, nutrients and toxics. The $100-million project consisted of hydraulically dredging approximately 240,000 cu yd of contaminated sediment and applying a low-permeable layer of AquaBlok to isolate and sequester residual contamination post-dredging. The objective was to minimize the potential that remaining sediment would negatively impact the lake habitat.

The dredge and cap approach is intended to focus dredging activity only on the highest levels of contaminant concentrations within a site. Removal should not be driven by achieving a low target residual concentration level because remaining contaminants in the sediment can be effectively sequestered or isolated with either a low-permeable cap, such as AquaBlok, or a permeable in-situ amendment layer, such as AquaGate, AquaBlok's composite particle materials consisting of an aggregate core and powdered treatment materials, such as powdered activated carbon (PAC) or organoclay.

For this project, AquaBlok established a local manufacturing plant and supplied over 30,000 tons of AquaBlok to the project site.

Each year, ENR California, a technical publication in the engineering and construction industry, assembles an independent group of judges to review, score and determine final winners. Projects were evaluated on overcoming challenges, contributing to the industry and community, maintaining safety; and construction and design quality. Three panels of judges reviewed 110 projects, the region’s highest-ever number of entries, and selected 49 projects as winners in 20 categories. The Machado Lake Ecosystem Rehabiliation Project was a winner in the Water/Environment category.

For more information on AquaBlok and their contaminated sediment remediation materials, please visit or call (419) 825-1325.

About AquaBlok, Ltd.

AquaBlok, Ltd. is a manufacturer of composite materials utilizing its patented coating and amendment approach. The company has a long history in the environmental industry and a range of products utilized in groundwater treatment and sediment remediation applications. AquaBlok uses its low-permeable bentonite delivery system in a range of geotechnical applications including, industrial impoundment sealing, anti-seep collars (trench dams) around piping, cut-off walls in porous soil conditions, and levee and dam repair or construction.

Katie Stubleski