March 2019

EPA’s Signals Intent to Move Forward with MCL Process for PFAS

According to EPA’s recently released per-and polyfluoralkyl substances (PFAS) action plan, as well as statements by the EPA Officials, EPA intends to set a maximum contaminant level (MCL) for perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluoroctane sulfonate (PFOS), two of the many chemicals in the PFAS family. EPA is planning to propose a regulatory determination, the first step in the MCL rulemaking process, for the two compounds yet this year. How likely is the EPA, under the current administration, to follow through and actually set a PFAS MCL for drinking water?

Vapor Intrusion Fundamentals 47 – Sanitary Sewers, the Preferential Pathway, Part 1

In general, Vapor Intrusion (VI) assessments can be thought of as a three-legged stool, with each leg representing a contributing source that must be understood; including:

  • contributions associated with soil gas,
  • contributions associated with indoor sources, and
  • contributions associated with preferential pathways.

Until recently, most assessment efforts (and modeling) have focused on the first two legs – understanding the contributions from soil gas and the contributions from indoor sources. The third leg, contribution from preferential pathways, is generally given lip service but rarely evaluated in a rigorous manner. More often than not, the sanitary sewer will be the preferential pathway of concern. Not understanding this third leg of VI assessment stool can lead to a misdiagnosis of the issues and implementation of ineffective and costly mitigation efforts. This is a game changer when you consider …  

FY 2018 EPA Enforcement Results Show Continued Overall Decrease

On February 8, 2018, U.S. EPA (EPA) released annual enforcement results for fiscal year (FY) 2018. The report shows continued decreases in inspections, new civil cases, and criminal enforcement charges, suggesting an overall decrease in enforcement activities in FY 2018. Given the proposed budget cuts to EPA, and a continued focus on “informal” compliance, this trend seems likely to continue.

March 2019 WOTUS Update

On March 8, 2019, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and the U.S. EPA (EPA) withdrew their appeals of U.S. district judges’ decisions to vacate the rule that delayed the implementation of the Obama-era 2015 Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule. The result is that the 2015 WOTUS rule applies in 22 states, the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories, and the pre-2015 rules and guidance apply to the other 28 states.

On February 27 and 28, 2019, the USACE and EPA held public hearings on the proposed redefinition of WOTUS (released in December 2018). The 60-day comment period on the new definition is open until April 15, 2019. Written comments about the rule can be submitted to the agencies at the Federal eRulemaking Portal. The WOTUS Docket ID number is EPA-HQ-OW-2018-0149.

IDEM Screening and Closure Level Tables Updated

On March 4, 2019, Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) updated its Screening and Closure Level Tables as found on its webpage. IDEM’s 2019 Screening Level Table is effective beginning March 4, 2019 with a six-month transition period ending September 4, 2019.

The 2019 version of Table A-6 includes all the chemicals found in the 2018 table except for cypermethrin. Table A-6 contains new entries for the following chemicals: lanthanum, anhydrous lanthanum chloride, lanthanum chloride heptahydrate, lanthanum nitrate hexahydrate, lanthanum acetate hydrate, tert-butyl acetate, and weathered toxaphene. The name for propyzamide was changed to pronamide. The 2019 version of Table A-6 also incorporates updates by the U.S. EPA for fifteen chemicals based upon new source data for chemical parameters and toxicity values. 

Cox-Colvin & Associates, Inc.

Project Spotlight

Coming Soon in the April Newsletter

  • The latest on PFAS
  • Approaches to evaluate sewer connections and deciphering the associated VI Analytical Data
  • RCRA pharmaceutical rule promulgated

Upcoming Events

Colvin & Associates, Inc. personnel are actively involved in the technical and regulatory aspects of the environmental field as it evolves. Cox-Colvin will be participating as presenters, sponsors, or exhibitors at the following environmental conferences in the coming months.

March 26-27, 2019: Cox-Colvin & Associates will be at the 28th Annual Sustainability & EHS Symposium in Cincinnati, OH. Stop by our booth to say hello.

May 9, 2019: Laurie Chilcote, Cox-Colvin & Associates, will be presenting Proven Active Soil Gas Sampling Techniques for Efficient Site Characterization, Vapor Intrusion Investigation and Mitigation at the Ground Gas Conference in London, UK

May 15-17, 2019: Laurie Chilcote, Cox-Colvin & Associates, will be presenting Proven Method to Accurately Access Location and VI Potential to Better Define your CSM Model at the Environmental Show of the South in Chattanooga, TN.