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Environmental Team


Kurt M. Balasek, PG, CHG, QSD

Manager of Environmental Services

Mr. Balasek is a California Professional Geologist and Certified Hydrogeologist with over 30 years of experience serving a range of clients affected by environmental issues.  Mr. Balasek is the Environmental Services Manager and directs a team of highly qualified geologists, engineers and environmental scientists.

Mr. Balasek has spent his career primarily in northern and central California and has developed long and trusting relationships with key regulatory agencies, land developers and a wide range of industries.  Mr. Balasek has used his vast experience to negotiate environmental and financing aspects of various property transactions and has often been successful resolving complex problems that free up land for development, redevelopment or conservation.  Mr. Balasek has conducted and managed hundreds of soil and groundwater investigations and has developed a unique skill set centered on crisis management.  As such, Mr. Balasek and his team have a reputation for rapid response and resolution so that difficult environmental restrictions are removed in time to avoid costly delays.  Mr. Balasek also understands most common agricultural practices and has worked closely with ranchers and farmers to address constantly changing state and federal regulations.  Mr. Balasek is always available to spend time discussing environmental aspects of proposed projects and has based his career on developing a reputation as a trusted and confidential advisor.



Dennis B. Nakamoto, PG, CHg, CEG

Senior Hydrogeologist

Mr. Nakamoto, a California Professional Geologist, Certified Engineering Geologist, and Certified Hydrogeologist, has been employed in environmental consulting since 1978. His decades of environmental consulting encompass groundwater studies, site characterization studies, remediation construction oversight, regulatory compliance, and human health risk assessments. He manages work and assists clients on projects for contaminants including volatile organic compounds, petroleum hydrocarbons, metals, chlorinated hydrocarbons, pesticides and herbicides, and asbestos in soil, water and air.

Mr. Nakamoto’s experience encompasses studies of groundwater resources and supply including well design and installation, well rehabilitation, and aquifer characterizations. He has filled key roles in Community Relations Plan implementations, coordinating with project stakeholders, and participating in public meetings to disseminate project information and advocate project goals.

He is highly experienced in interpreting geophysical data from borehole electric logs, gamma-gamma and natural gamma logs, neutron logs and acoustic logs. He has designed monitored construction of zone-specific multiple completion and nested monitoring wells, extraction wells, recharge wells, and injection wells. Mr. Nakamoto also holds professional licenses in Oregon and Wyoming.



Matthew A. Taylor

Supervising Environmental Scientist

Mr. Taylor has expertise in performing groundwater pumping tests, air sparging and vapor extraction pilot tests, and supervised construction, operation and maintenance of remediation systems. Employed in environmental consulting since 1990, he also has prepared hazardous materials management plans, spill prevention control and countermeasure plans, risk management and prevention plans, risk-based corrective action plans, air discharge permit documentation and National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit applications.

His experience includes preparation of numerous indoor air quality evaluation projects for Sacramento area hospitals, schools, commercial buildings, law firms and residential developments. Mr. Taylor is a member of the Groundwater Resources Association of California and the Sacramento Claims Association.



Nancy M. Malaret

Senior Environmental Scientist

Ms. Malaret, who has worked in the environmental field since 2003, performs Phase I Environmental Site Assessments according to ASTM E1527-13 and All Appropriate Inquiries (AAI) guidelines. She assists with the coordination of sampling water wells and developing Phase II soil sampling plans. She uses GIS mapping techniques to identify private potable wells located near commercial and industrial facilities that may have contaminated the groundwater. She coordinated sampling of the wells and analysis of water samples collected, and has conducted human health risk assessments on sites with volatile organic compounds, semi-volatile organic compounds, and metals contamination.

Her investigations have involved multiple parcel sites with extensive history, large-scale residential subdivisions, office buildings, gasoline stations, dry cleaners, and heavy equipment manufacturing and repair facilities. Ms. Malaret has conducted multiple corridor assessments along roadways being prepared for expansion or improvements. She also conducted a Hazardous, Toxic, and Radioactive Waste Assessment for the United States Army Corps of Engineers on a 20-mile stretch of the St. Johns River in Jacksonville, Florida.



Joseph W. Rosenbery, PG, MS

Staff Geologist

Mr. Rosenbery received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Geology from California State University, Humboldt, and his Master of Science degree in Geology from California State University, Sacramento.

Mr. Rosenbery worked for the Geology Department at CSU, Sacramento for three years researching hyporheic conditions in salmon spawning habitat on the American and Feather Rivers. This research included developing field methods to characterize the environment in which Salmon spawning takes place. Mr. Rosenbery designed sample layouts, installed piezometers, collected water quality and physical attribute data, and designed experiments to accomplish the research goals. His master’s thesis worked to define the relationship between sediment permeability and the grain size distribution of river gravels in areas where habitat improvement projects have been implemented. This research added to the knowledge base used to identify the potential lifespan of gravel augmentations and helped drive the future design of habitat improvement projects in a dynamic natural environment.



RACHEL M. BECK

STAFF GEOLOGIST

Ms. Beck is a graduate from California State University Sacramento and earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Geology. During Ms. Beck’s undergraduate studies she was involved in collaborative research with the State Water Resources Control Board and U.S. Geological Survey to map groundwater resources in California, and worked to determine the effects of underground disposal of wastewater on groundwater. While Ms. Beck worked on the project, she utilized California Department of Oil, Gas, and Geothermal well records and geophysical logs to characterize oil fields of interest. Additionally, Ms. Beck’s served as the project coordinator, providing recommendations to the principal investigator, assisting in managing the project’s budget, scope, and setting project goals, such as student research and scientific publications. Her experience on this project helped her to acquire practical knowledge of California’s sustainable groundwater management act as well as groundwater laws and regulations.

Ms. Beck also volunteered at the USGS California Water Science Center, assisting members of the Bay-Delta Biochemistry Program to prepare water quality sensors for field deployment in ongoing habitat monitoring programs.

Her professional experience includes planning and implementation of Phase I and II Environmental Site Assessments in support of commercial and residential development projects in urban and rural settings. Ms. Beck performs geological research, environmental field monitoring, and technical report preparation.



Christopher Hall, MS

Staff Geologist

Mr. Hall earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Geology, as well as a Master of Science degree in Geology from California State University, Sacramento. During his time at CSU, Sacramento, Mr. Hall worked for the Geology Department as an instructor of the Earth Science Laboratory where he communicated geologic concepts including rock and mineral identification, topographic map interpretation, oceanography, meteorology and proper applications of the scientific method and systematic laboratory procedures in scientific inquiry. In addition, Mr. Hall was a Teaching Assistant for the Geology Department’s Advanced Geologic Mapping course where he assisted CSU, Sacramento professors and supported students with geologic mapping, interpretation, and comprehensive technical report writing. Mr. Hall’s professional experiences include technical support at the Oroville Dam Spillway Restoration project where he performed structural geologic mapping of the spillway foundation in support of emergency repairs.



Donald W. Updegraff

Senior Environmental Technician

Mr. Updegraff, an environmental consulting professional since 1987, has expertise in the protocols for field determination of toxic and hazard characteristics of unknown materials. He has served as the Radiation Safety Officer for use, maintenance and storage of nuclear density and moisture gauges used for geotechnical studies, and he has constructed, maintained and dismantled chemical remediation systems, including air sparge, air stripping, and carbon adsorption systems. He served for 20 years as a volunteer Emergency Medical Technician with the Clarksburg Fire District, where he has risen to the rank of Lieutenant and District Training Officer.

Experienced in collection of soil vapor and subslab samples at sites contaminated by volatile organic compounds, Mr. Updegraff is skilled in the field use of monitoring equipment including photoionization detectors (PID), flame ionization detectors (FID), water quality instruments, and explosive atmosphere (LEL) and oxygen sensors. He has been called upon to characterize contents of drums uncovered by grading at an active Army depot, and to supervise installation and removal of petroleum hydrocarbon product underground storage tanks, as well as remediation by excavation and offsite disposal. He is certified in hazardous waste operations and emergency response (HAZWOPER), Confined Space Entry, Lockout Tagout procedures and High/Low Angle Rescue Methods.