Michael H. Simpson, MS, MADepartment Chair and Core Faculty, and Director for the Center for Climate Preparedness and Community Resilience
Department of Environmental Studies
Program Director, Resource Management and Conservation Masters Degree and Sustainable Development and Climate Change Masters Degree Concentration
I am presently principle of MHS and Associates LLC where I continue to do environmental consulting, both nationally and internationally.
Presently, I am on the boards of both the New Hampshire Association of Natural Resource Scientists and the Corporate Wetlands Restoration Initative. I am also currently the the chair of the NH Wetland Scientists.
I bring to my students within the Resource Management and Conservation Program (RMC) over twenty years of consulting and project management experience in the wetlands, watershed and pollution prevention fields. I am a licensed wetlands scientist. I also hold a certification as a Level IV solid waste facility manager, 40-Hour HAZWOPER certified and certified to complete ASTM Phase 1 site assessments.
Watershed and Wetlands Professional Work include:
Ecological Assessment of Wetlands Mitigation Site For the Rindge, NH Conservation Commission collection of baseline wetlands, vegetation zonation, stream sediment transects and water quality parameters, as the result of the siting of proposed Home Depot superstore within the same micro-watershed.
Wetlands Mitigation and Restoration, For a private client in Marlow, NH, due to an order from state regulators to restore, providing a private client regulator interface, design, construction oversight, and post construction monitoring at an ongoing commercial gravel extraction operation.
Hydrologic Assessment and Jurisdictional Wetlands Delineation, For a private client in Acworth, NH, establishment of surface and sub-surface monitoring points to ascertain wetlands hydrology for a shrub/emergent palustrian wetland in which the landowner wants to site a pond. Includes correlation of water levels amongst monitoring points as well as against precipitation events during the monitoring period. Analysis of historical precipitation data compared tpo the current year will be used to help determine probable pond level fluctuations over time. As part of this project, and in preparation for a permit application, a jurisdictional wetlands delineation using the US Army Corps methodology is being completed.
The following projects are representative of jurisdictional delineations utilizing the 1987 Army Corps Methodology in combination with the New England Hydric Soil Manual Criteria and referencing the Fish and Wildlife Wetlands Plant Indicator list.
Wetlands Delineation and Field Mapping For Construction of Regional Landfill, For Upper Valley Regional Solid Waste District, Hartland, VT.
Wetlands Delineation and Field Mapping for a Proposed Construction and Demolition Regional Landfill, Shaftsbury VT. For Private Client
Wetland Delineation for Parking Lot and Associated Drainage System Improvement: Grantham, NH. For Grantham Elementary School.
Delineation for Road and Pipeline Corridor: All wetlands delineated on a 500 care parcel so to determine access road and pipeline corridors for large-scale groundwater extraction project. For Sunapee Springs Water Company, Sunapee, NH.
Wetlands Delineation and Application for Stream Crossing: For Osgood Welding, Claremont, NH.
Multiple Wetlands Delineation Projects: Subcontracted to Surveying Firms of: Bedard and Associates, Wilmot, NH and Clayton Platt, Inc. Grantham, NH.
Assessment and Classification
The following projects focused upon assessing wetlands for functional value and/or the classification of wetlands reflecting the US Fish and Wildlife classification systems (Cowardin, et. al).
Tidal Wetland Assessment Methodology: Developed for Normandeau Associates and utilized to determine comparative health of tidal and freshwater tidal wetland systems within the NH Coastal Zone; for NH CZM Program, Subcontracted to Normandeau Associates, Bedford, NH.
Classification of a Community’s Wetland Systems: For the Planning Dept., conducted a city-wide survey of all wetlands. With a combination of photo-interpretation and ground-truthing, classifying all wetlands down to class level, utilizing the US Fish and Wildlife classification system. For Concord, NH
Wetlands and Soils Assessment for Factory Expansion: Included determination of potential wetlands and analysis of soils for disturbance and indicators of hydric conditions. For DoorCrafters, Inc., Ludlow, VT.
ASTM Phase 1 Site assessment For 39 acres of Wetland: For a parcel transferred From the Trust of Public Land to US Fish and Wildlife Service, Swanton, VT. For Trust foe Public Lands , Montpelier, VT
Pond Site Assessment: Included delineation all wetlands on property and choosing a site that would location that could utilize site hydrology while minimizing impacts to existing wetlands. Private Client, Lyme, NH
Watershed Wetlands Survey : Associated With the Siting of a Bedrock Well. For Lake Sunapee Water Company, Sunapee, NH.
Assessment of Impacted Tidal and Freshwater Tidal Wetlands: within the Town of Rye For New Hampshire’s CZM Program, Subcontracted to Normandeau Associates, Bedford, NH.
Mitigation and Restoration
The following projects reflect projects with significant efforts that focused upon mitigation or restoration of wetlands and associate upland buffers. Aspects of the projects often required jurisdictional delineations and/or functional assessments.
Wetland and Wetland Buffer Planting Plan: In conjunction with a major stream crossing and bank disturbance. Lamb property, Andover, NH.
Wetland Buffer Mitigation Design: Included a jurisdictional delineation in conjunction with pond establishment for Shepard Butler Landscape Architect project in Orford, NH
Creation and Implementation of a Restoration Plan: To address wetlands impacts resulting from logging and grubbing operation and included a vernal pool restoration. Private Client, Bath, NH
Wetlands Assessment and Mitigation Plan to Restore a Dredged and Filled Wetland: Private Client, Grantham, NH.
Stream Restoration: This project included the creation and submittal of all regulatory documentation and performance of site monitoring for 2 subsequent years. Private Client, Canaan, NH
Wetland Buffer Planting Plan: For Shepard Butler Landscape Architect project in Boston, MA
Wetlands Assessment, Mapping and Mitigation Plan to Restore Filled Wetland: Private Client, Sunapee, NH.
Wetlands Restoration Plan for a Filled Wetland: Private Client, Claremont, NH.
Assessment of Regulatory Compliance of a Restored Wetland: Private Client, Grantham, NH.
Watershed Scale Analysis
These projects reflect analysis of potential impact on water quality, run-off potential or ground water impact due to changes in land use within micro-watersheds.
Assessment of Causal Agents Contributing to Phosphorus Loading: in Jobs Creek Micro-watershed. Antioch Project For Lake Sunapee Protective Association, Sunapee, NH
Upper Montane Watershed Assessment: This project looked specifically at forestry, high elevation subsistence husbandry and agriculture and low-elevation banana plantation activities and their impact on water quality within the Los Novellos River watershed. For EARTH University, Guacimo, Costa Rica.
Seven Micro-Watershed Rapid Assessments: Conducted within the Lake Sunapee Watershed. For the Lake Sunapee Protective Association
Potential Contaminant Source Survey Associated With Establishment of Bedrock Wells: Include an ASTM Phase 1 assessment of 500 acre property as well as a watershed- scale survey of land use and potential contaminant sources. A land use management and education plan was also developed. For Sunapee Springs Water Company, Georges Mills, NH.
Wildlife Habitat Analysis and Vernal Pool Inventory, for the expansion of the Crotched Mountain Ski Resort , Francestown, NH: Along with Jeff Littleton, of Moosewood Ecological, this project also required meeting with federal, state and local regulatory agencies as well as providing information to local land trusts regarding protection of critical wildlife habitat and travel corridors. Client contact Covell & Associates, Lyndeborough, NH. Project Manager
Marine Pollution Prevention Assessment Lake Powell, Utah: For Aramark, Inc. and National Park Service. Under a grant from State of Utah, Pollution Prevention Program.
Pollution Prevention Watershed Assessment for Sundance Ski Area, Provo, Utah: Under a grant from State of Utah, Pollution Prevention Program
Biological / Chemical Parameters for Artificial Wetlands System for Treatment of Regionally Generated Septage : researched wetlands designs for the treatment of nitrogen, phosphorus, TSS and BOD removal in a multi-stage wetland system in Anne Arundel County, MD. Project for Lombardo & Associates, Boston, MA.
Surface and Groundwater Monitoring for Potential Contamination from a Municipal Landfill : Water sampling from multiple groundwater wells and surface water flowage for volatile organic carbon compounds, heavy metals, conductivity and pH. Statistical test completed on all well data for significant exceedence of regulatory environmental standards. For Municipality of Dover, VT.
Groundwater Monitoring for Contamination of Leaking Underground Storage Tank : Water sampling from multiple groundwater wells for volatile organic carbon compounds. Included ground water flow mapping, plume demarcation and removal of contaminants. Statistical test completed on all well data for significant exceedence of regulatory environmental standards. For Private Client, Windsor, VT.
Assessment of Potential Phosphorous and Nitrogen Loading & Removal From a Constructed Wetland : A constructed weir system to remove TSS, Phosphorus and Nitrogen from micro-watershed run-off into Lake Sunapee was assessed so to provide weir operation guidance for different seasons of the year. Baseline vegetative community structure and diversity was collected in wetlands above and below the weir system. For the Lake Sunapee Protective Association, Sunapee, NH.
Assessment of Wetlands and Other Sensitive Receptors From the Extraction of Groundwater : Developed a model, in conjunction with a hydro-geologist and geophysicist to ascertain which wetlands should be monitored for impacts from large groundwater withdrawals from bedrock wells. Developed a monitoring protocol prior to, during and after a 72 hour pump-down test of all production wells. Results established maximum pump rate for those wells and the model has been subsequently referenced by DES water resource specialists. Research conducted at the Sunapee Springs Water Company, George Mills, NH.
Impacts to Riparian Corridors from Increased Run-off : Through a statistical analysis Global Climate Change Models were down-scaled so to project change in frequency of intense precipitation events at the local level. This information was applied to Geographic Information System (GIS) representation of the natural watershed configurations combined with the constructed drainage infrastructure within the city. Combined with scenarios of build-out based on current zoning, flooding and culvert failure was projected. Based on the types, size and number of culverts projected to fail a replacement-cost analysis was completed. For the Keene, NH City Planning Department and the Keene Committee on Climate Change
On-site Treatment of Oil Contaminated Soils : Development of on-site biological treatment methodology to mitigate contaminated soils from an oil spill. Included technology design and oversight of construction followed by oversight of seasonal management plan. Seasonal sampling of shallow and deep soils and reporting to regulatory agency performed. Private Client, Brownsville, VT.
Material Management and Sustainability Professional Work:
Current Work (MHS & Associates)
Organic Diversion Strategies for Businesses in the Windham Vermont Solid Waste Management District, under a grant from Vermont’s Agency of Natural Resources. To identify and assess businesses for the source separation of organic waste streams for diversion to an agricultural composting site. Work includes, initial site assessments, mapping internal facility handling and storage of source separated streams, quantification of materials streams and potential contaminants to the composting operation. Selected businesses are giving an initial on-site training for staff. Field Researcher and Trainer.
Waste Management Capacity Building in Post-Conflict Liberia, under a grant from Collaborative Working Group and in collaboration with the International Rescue Committee and DUCOR, Liberia. To assess points of intervention for the development of micro-enterprises to remove waste and clean streets in the greater Monrovia area. Specific work-products include: materials handling strategy, cash-flow analysis and a business plan for expansion of services to the 31 markets within the City. Research Director and Author
Economic Impact of Informal Sector Scavenging in the Developing South. Under a grant awarded a grant from Deutsche Gesellschaft fur Technische Zusammenarbeit (The German Ministry for Economic Development). To conduct research on efforts to manage waste for rapidly expanding cities within six countries in the developing world. Modeling economic impacts to determine the value provided by the scavenger community, both to the solid waste system and to the local economy as a whole. Scenario analysis will project the costs would if these informal sector waste handling activities ceased and the formal sector expanded their efforts to provide a similar service. The analysis includes costs of environmental impacts quantified by carbon equivalents from greenhouse gas releases. Research Director and Co-Author
2004 – 2006 (selected projects with MHS & Associates)
Assessment of Waste Prevention in Massachusetts’ Acute Care Hospitals, for the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection, and in conjunction with Terra, Newburyport, MA. To assess, through surveys and literature research, the current state of waste prevention in Massachusetts acute care hospitals. Includes an analysis of trends analyses in acute care hospital services and health care industry so to project possible impacts on waste generation and composition. Researcher and Co-Author.
Carbon and Nitrogen Greenhouse Gas Impacts from Integrated Waste and Wastewater Management, for WASTE, Advisers on Urban Environment and Development, Netherlands, under the UWEP initiative. To assess the approach developed to quantify the net reduction in the release of the greenhouse gases, in CO2 and N2O equivalents, as the result of instituting and integrated solid waste management strategy and decentralized wastewater treatment approaches for countries in the developing world. The final analysis also critiques a strategy for creating a Clean Development Mechanism (Kyoto Protocol) for instituting an integrated solid waste management approach at the city level. Research Reviewer and Co-Author
Hunts Point Food Distribution Center and Fulton Fish Market Organics Recovery Feasibility Study, for the New York City Economic Development Authority and the New York Department of Sanitation. To determine generation rate and composition of market produce and fish waste streams, requesting and assessing industry responses for potential composting, anaerobic digestion and fertilizer production technologies, ranking potential sites for facilities and completing an economic analysis with associated alternative financing options. Technology Assessment and Field Researcher.
Compost Site Feasibility Analysis for the Composting of Food Waste Assessing At The Retire Nike Missile Site, Randolph, MA, for the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Management. To assess viability of closed military reservation as potential compost site, including ASTM Phase 1 site assessment, endangered and threaten species habitat assessment, projected costs for final closure of abandoned military infrastructure and development of a privatized composting facility. Project Manager, Field Researcher and Co-Author.
Compost Facility Operator Training, for the Delaware’s Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control. Develop and deliver a multi-day training for current and potential compost facility operators throughout the state of Delaware. Curriculum included, the biology of composting, site assessment and design, compost pile formation, monitoring and management, assessing compost stability and marketing of compost. Author and Trainer.
1994 ; 2006 (while at Antioch University New England)
Initiation of a National Solid Waste Policy, conducted under a US EPA ECO-links grant for the Bulgarian Ministry of Planning and the Environment. Expanding stakeholder capacity beyond central government control; including NGOs, local government officials, news media and educators. Researching appropriate technology and strategies applicable for Bulgaria, developing associated training materials, facilitation and training and final framing of objectives to incorporate into a national waste management policy. Co-Trainer and Co-Facilitator.
Economic Development for the Informal Sector by Expansion of Materials Recovery Micro-enterprises, for the Ministry of Environment and Forests, Government of India, at the Training Program on Urban Solid Waste Management To present an approach to overcome institutional challenges to the integration of informal sector micro-enterprises, which recover recyclables, into a formal waste management strategy so to reduce waste disposal and extend landfill life. Co-author and Co-Presenter
Landfill Assessment and Organics Recovery Feasibility Study, for WASTE, Advisers on Urban Environment and Development, Netherlands. To evaluate the current state of the Blagoevgrad, Bulgaria municipal landfill operation and assess the potential for landfill mining. Includes a future landfill design combined with feasibility study of diverting organic material to a composting alternative by the informal sector micro-enterprises already established to capture recyclables. Technical Specialist and Trainer.
Solid Waste Rate Setting Analysis, for the City of Keene, NH. To develop alternative solid waste and recycling collection scenarios that includes a full-cost accounting of capitalizing, managing and operating the solid waste collection and transfer system by the City as compared to bid prices being offered by private solid waste companies. A final report presented to the city council. Cost Analysis and Co-Author
Incorporation of “Critical Teaching Skills Into School Curricula on Waste Management and Recycling, under a US EPA Education Grant and in conjunction with the New Hampshire Resource Recovery Association. To develop a four module curriculum for middle school students, including multiple exercises to introduce students to the concept of materials sustainability. Each exercise designed to utilize the two or more tenets central to the educational theory of critical thinking skills. Final document for distribution throughout the US EPA regions. Co-Author
Facts About Septage Disposal, for the NH Resource Recovery Association and funded under an EPA 205j grant. To create an outreach presentation, with associate training material, on the technical aspects of septage disposal options within the State of New Hampshire. Author
1994 ; 2004 (selected projects with DSM Environmental Services)
Development of a Privatized Source-Separated Food Waste and Separate Biosolids In-vessel Composting Facility, for the Town of Hanover, NH and Dartmouth College. Providing technical assistance for 25-ton-per-day facility design, permitting requirements, development of cash flow projections, debt/equity needs assessment and facilitating location of potential equity investors, construction management and assessment of first year of operation. Facility Co-designer, Air Treatment Biofilter Designer, Construction and Shake-out Operations Manager.
Jobs Through Recycling Economic Development Demonstration Project, under a two-year, US EPA funded effort to the Southwest Public Recycling Association, Tucson, AZ. To develop approaches to marshal local economic development resources and manufacturing technical assistance so to enhance manufacturing of products from recycled material within the states of Utah, Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona. Development of twelve demonstration manufacturing projects that enhance the diversion of secondary materials, employ more people and results in capital investment into the rural west/southwest region. All projects necessarily included stakeholder capacity building and proposal evaluation. Project Manager, Facilitator, Trainer
Waste Minimization Analysis for Deseret Industries of the Church of Latter Day Saints. Analysis of materials handling process flow, facility activity foot print and in-put/out-put analysis so to develop alternatives methods for accepting and recovering materials. Associated return-on-investment analysis and staff training completed. Project Manager.
Technical Site Assessment and Economic Analysis for an Institutional Food Waste Composting and Residue Transfer Station Facilities, for the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA. To evaluate multiple locations for facility siting, including odor modeling, noise impact assessment and environmental impact analysis to neighbors, adjacent wetlands and natural resources. Project Manager and Field Researcher.
Pollution Prevention Commercial Facility Assessments, for Utah’s Department of Environmental Quality. To develop model approaches for pollution prevention for the commercial sectors of printing, wood processing, and maintenance garage facilities. The analysis included an economic analysis of a return-on-investment for instituting any recommended changes in operational behavior, technology or purchases. Project Manager
Recycling Reclamation Study, for Pikitup, Johannesburg, South Africa’s. To assess waste generation and composition, which includes commercial sector waste sorts; research of informal sector recycling infrastructure to ascertain how street and dump collectors can be integrated into the formal waste management system. Focus group research on willingness-to-participate in an expanded recycling effort and an economic analysis of collection and processing options. Field Researcher and Co-Author.
Materials Diversion Analysis for Dartmouth College’s Food Services, under a grant from the American Forests and Paper Association. To determine materials collection and diversion strategies from disposal, as well as assessment of internal procurement and operations to enhance waste minimization. This analysis included the net impact of biological demand to waste water streams from in-sink food disposals. Research Design, and Co-Author
Strategic Plan for Pollution Prevention Intervention, under Environmental Planning Grant from US Department Commerce for the Vermont Small Business Development Corporation. To facilitate development of a cooperative plan for the Vermont Manufacturing Extension Center, the Vermont Department of Environmental Conservation and the Small Business Development Corporation to provide environmental assistance to Vermont manufacturers to maximize energy and pollutant minimization. Co-facilitator
Field Test of the Biodegradability of Coated Paper Products, under a grant from The American Forest and Paper Association. To conduct field trial so to ascertain how well coated milk cartons and coated paper, would decompose through each stage of a three phase composting process utilizing an agitated bay, in-vessel composting system. Research Designer and Data Analysis
Marine Operations Pollution Prevention Assessment, for the US National Park Service, Lake Powell. To assess and propose changes in purchasing, equipment and standard operating procedures to minimize pollutants that could negatively impact lake waters. Project Manager.
Commercial Manufacturing Waste Minimization, for all community economic development organizations in the greater New York City region. To developed and implemented a Train-the-Trainer commercial waste minimization curriculum, using the garment industry as the training case study. Include a return-on-investment and cash flow analysis methodology. Project Manager, Trainer.
Biodegradable Plastic Bag Field Research Pilot, for Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection and Marlborough, MA, in conjunction with Bedminster Bioconversion. To characterize collected MSW going to an in-vessel co-composting facility to ascertain film plastic weight (wet) in relationship to other waste stream components, both curbside field test for biodegradable bag integrity and in-situ tests at the facility to ascertain biodegradability. Research Designer, Field Researcher and Author.
Flathead County, Montana – Solid Waste Management Plan Cost Analysis, for the Flathead County Solid Waste Management District. To facilitate the development of acceptable alternative options for an integrated solid waste management system. Included a multi-scenario cost analysis, which was subsequently used to develop a solid waste rate-setting structure for the District. Project Manager, Researcher
Ski Area Pollution Prevention Assessment, for the Sundance Ski Area, Film Institute & Ranch in Provo, Utah. Conduct a site assessment, provide P2 recommendations and conduct associated analysis of return-on-investment. Subsequent training for staff including developing internal, accounting, communication and education systems. Project Manager and Trainer
1989 ; 1994 (selected projects with the Tellus Institute)
Multi-year MSW Urban Compost Development Project, for the Indonesian Center for Policy Implementation Studies, in conjunction with the Harvard Institute of Economic Development. To develop an implementation model for informal sector recycling micro-enterprises to interface with the formal solid waste management system to develop marketable compost products. Including public sector planning support, micro-financing, development of a permanent school for compost operations and marketing; establishment of 5 pilot facilities, with subsequent economic analysis and compost market assessment. Technical Specialist, Trainer.
Study for Source Separated Organics Composting System at Riker’s Island Prison, for the New York City Department of Sanitation and Department of Corrections. To assess organic generation rate and composition of prison waste streams, compost recipe development, technology evaluation. Subsequent facility construction oversight, operator training, assessment of first year of operation, and analysis of end-product. Project Manager
Economic Analysis of Future Solid Waste Management Options, for the US National Park Service, Grand Canyon National Park. To evaluate options for diversion of park generated materials from disposal to recovery. Conduct an alternative costs analysis including collection, transfer and transport systems, which included scenarios where park personnel versus privatized companies provided components of the system management and operations. Project Manager and researcher
Development of WastePlan: A Computer Model for Full Cost Accounting for Integrated Waste Management Planning, To provide cost-benefit analysis for local and regional solid waste planners. Use of WastePlan is necessarily coupled with local stakeholder capacity building so to determine both the choice of system components as well as subsequent scenario and sensitivity analysis. Co-designer, Multiple Projects’ Researcher and/or Manager
Anaerobic Digestion Technology Assessment, for the Rhode Island Solid Waste Management Corporation. To develop and evaluate responses for a request for qualification from North American and European MSW anaerobic digestion technologies. The technical assessment is coupled with a annualized net cost projection including capital, O&M and labor costs.
1988 ; 1989 (selected projects with E&A Associates)
Bench-Scale Composting Research on Bag Biodegradability, for Archers Daniel Midland, Chicago, Illinois. To design bench-scale composter and methodology to test the biodegradability of cornstarch bags under controlled laboratory conditions. Subsequent institution of collection pilot to evaluate both curbside bag durability and degradability of bags through windrow-turn composting approach. Research Design, Field Research.
Compost System Design to Incorporate Grass, for the City of Temple Terrace, Florida, design of a wet-season — dry-season municipal scale composting methodology to accept large volumes of high-nitrogen grass waste. This was accompanied by a proposed curbside collection strategy and related cost analysis. Designer, Trainer and Author
Compost Operations and Marketing Manual for Rhode Island Communities, for the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management. To develop of facility operators’ standard operating procedures for composting municipally generated organic wastes, with this manual was a multi-day training curriculum initially tested in two Rhode Island communities. Author and Trainer.
1986 – 1988 (at Massachusetts Dept. of Environmental Quality Engineering)
Composting Plan for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Develop a multi-year strategy for instituting compost projects throughout Massachusetts so to divert materials from disposal. Author.
Researching Potential Contaminants from Composting Leaves and Grass. To research potential contaminants found in yard waste including percentage of non-degradable materials through a bulk curbside collection, the heavy metal content of the final compost and potential nitrogen leaching due to high rates of grass additions to the composting process. Research Design and Data Analysis
Education Strategy and Curriculum for Municipal Scale Composting. To develop a two year composting training strategy to prepare communities to compost municipally generated yard waste in light of a proposed dis