Clean Drilling Techniques for Geotechnical Site Investigations

by | Nov 16, 2023

It’s now more important than ever to use clean drilling techniques for site investigations and always carry out an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA). Climate change is one of the major challenges of our time. With huge impacts on our health, environment and our future, everybody needs to do their part to act more environmentally conscious. This includes geotechnical drilling companies.

Here at Borehole Solutions, our drilling team understand how important these assessments are when it comes to protecting our planet for future generations to come. Despite what you may expect, there are some borehole drilling techniques that can help to preserve our landscape.

Environmental Impact Assessments (EIAs)

EIAs are used to determine the ground conditions to check whether a site is suitable for the proposed construction work, or otherwise. This may include analysing groundwater quality, potential damage to flora and fauna, as well as pollution of the land. These assessments are typically used for larger, more environmentally susceptible projects. However, it’s good practice to perform them prior to carrying out any drilling job. Click here to find out more about the legal requirements of EIAs.


Boreholes are used for a variety of reasons; some of which aid in protecting the environment. For example, window sample drilling can be used to gather information about the land and analyse the underlying substrates for geotechnical site investigations. These clean drilling techniques can also be used to search for harmful contaminants found in soil, such as asbestos or polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB).

Sonic Drilling

Believe it or not, sonic drilling is one of the most popular clean drilling techniques around. It involves drilling, coring and casing boreholes by vibrating the core barrel at sonic frequencies. The process tends to be used to collect continuous, undisturbed core samples through any geological formation.

Direct Push Drilling

Taking a profile of the soil substructure requires clean drilling techniques, such as direct push drilling. This uses percussive force to drive steel boring rods downwards into the ground to collect samples of groundwater or soil. It’s also possible to use probes on the rods to take measurements. Whilst this method is quick and inexpensive, it’s limited to shallow and soft ground formations.

Water Well Drilling

Most people are concerned about the environment when drilling wells due to the potential contamination of water sources. However, carrying out an EIA minimises this risk throughout the project. Plus, they’re certainly worthwhile as water wells are a great way to reduce your carbon footprint. Did you know that, compared to mains water, they can reduce carbon dioxide emissions by up to 90%?!

Contact Us

Professional geotechnical drilling companies should ensure they use clean drilling techniques to minimise environmental impact. Here at Borehole Solutions, our project methods are as environmentally friendly as possible. If you’re interested in finding out more about our drilling services, give us a call on 01733 200501 or click here to get in touch with the team.