Guidance & Documents

ITRC publishes and produces guidance documents and training courses that help state environmental agencies and others gain valuable technical knowledge and develop consistent regulatory approaches for reviewing and approving specific technologies. These include technical overviews, case studies, and technical and regulatory guidance documents. See the latest ITRC Product List, Updated in January 2024, for a list of all of ITRC's published products. 

These documents are written and reviewed by teams of environmental professionals, including state and federal environmental regulators, federal agency representatives, industry experts, community stakeholders, and academia. All ITRC documents undergo a rigorous external review, and all external comments and team responses are captured and posted to the team ITRC Connect community. ITRC will consider a lack of response during the 45-day external review period to signify no serious objection to the content within the product.


Knowledge Map

ITRC's QUEST Knowledge Map is an interactive tool for navigating ITRC's environmental guidance documents and resources, allowing users to filter through ITRC's vast library based on concise subjects.

Guidance Documents
146 Entries
7 years ago



This guidance focuses on long-term contaminant management using institutional controls (ICs). ICs are a form of land use controls (LUCs) that provide protection from exposure to contaminants on a site. While ICs consist of administrative or legal restrictions on a site, LUCs can also use physical measures, which are called engineering controls (ECs). In contrast to ECs, ICs are primarily government controls, proprietary controls, enforcement or permit mechanisms, and informational devices. In many states ICs are approved as part of a remedy. The IC may be the sole remedy or may be used in conjunction with other remedies or ECs. The protectiveness of the IC depends on management elements that ensure its integrity throughout its life cycle. When the critical elements of an IC are jeopardized, or fail, direct impact to human health and the environment can occur.


7 years ago



The Geospatial Analysis for Optimization at Environmental Sites (GRO-1) web-based guidance is designed to help practitioners better apply geospatial analyses in environmental projects. This guidance will help state regulators and other practitioners to understand, evaluate, and make informed decisions about geospatial analyses for optimizing activities at environmental sites. The material presented provides not only highly technical detail, but also introductory information for those who may not have expertise in this area. The document applies to all project life cycle stages: release detection, site characterization, remediation, monitoring and closure. The GRO-1 web-based technical and regulatory guidance document brings clarity to the planning, implementation, and communication of geospatial analysis in support of optimization. The GRO-1 document is a companion document to Groundwater Statistics and Monitoring Compliance (GSMC-1).

The GRO-1 document is formatted as a website. You can access the web document at any time from the ITRC website or you can bookmark the link. The fact sheets and review checklist are downloadable in a printable format (PDF). The software tables are in a downloadable Excel file. To print material from the website, use the “Print this page” link at the bottom of each page.


8 years ago



This web-based guidance document explains the process of geophysical classification, describes its benefits and limitations, and most importantly discusses the information and data needed by regulators to monitor and evaluate the use of the technology. This document also emphasizes using a systematic planning process to develop data acquisition and decision strategies at the outset of a munitions response effort, as well as quality considerations throughout the project. Stakeholder issues that are unique to munitions response are also discussed


9 years ago



This guidance document is a resource to inform regulators, responsible parties, other problem holders, consultants, community stakeholders, and other interested parties of the critical concepts related to characterization approaches and tools for collecting subsurface data at DNAPL sites.


9 years ago



Assists effective decision-making among state, local, and federal project managers and decision makers tasked with developing or reviewing risk assessments for contaminated sites using site-specific approaches, scenarios, and parameters. The document discusses commonly encountered issues organized around seven risk-assessment subjects (planning, data evaluation, toxicity, exposure assessment, risk characterization, risk management, and risk communication) when site-specific alternatives are proposed, and provides options for addressing these issues. Links to resources and tools that provide more detailed information on the specific issues and potential options are also provided. Community members and other stakeholders may find this document helpful for understanding and using risk assessment information to make better environmental decisions.

9 years ago



This ITRC petroleum vapor intrusion (PVI) guidance document provides an 8-step process for the effective assessment and management of vapor intrusion at sites contaminated with petroleum hydrocarbons. The guidance presents a method of screening petroleum-contaminated sites for potential vapor intrusion, as well as providing the tools and strategies that offer the most efficient means of evaluating the vapor intrusion pathway at these sites. The fundamental principle of this screening method is the “vertical separation distance,” which was developed using empirical data from hundreds of petroleum-contaminated sites. Use of separation distance to screen petroleum-contaminated sites allows managers to better focus scarce resources on sites with greater potential for petroleum vapor intrusion.

9 years ago



The objective of this guidance document is to assist decision-makers in identifying which contaminated sediment remedial technology is most favorable for a site based upon an evaluation of site-specific physical, sediment, contaminant, and land and waterway use characteristics. A six-step remedy selection framework is provided to help the user identify favorable technologies and remedial alternatives. Additional factors that need to be considered as part of the evaluation process are summarized (e.g. feasibility, cost, stakeholder and local governments concerns, and others).

10 years ago



The Groundwater Statistics and Monitoring Compliance (GSMC) web-based guidance is designed to help users without deep statistical expertise to understand the statistical techniques and methods related to groundwater cleanup and how to use them in all project life cycle stages: release detection, site characterization, remediation, monitoring and closure. The GSMC web-based technical and regulatory guidance document brings clarity to the planning, implementation, and communication of groundwater statistical methods and should lead to greater confidence and transparency in the use of groundwater statistics for environmental site management.

10 years ago



This web based guidance document provides a format that is easy to navigate through an in-depth analysis and overview of Biochemical Reactors (BCRs) for mining influenced water (MIW). The guidance uses a decision tree to understand the applicability given a number of site and influent parameters, testing, design, construction and monitoring. BCRs can be designed to address a wide range of flows, acidity, and metals loading and also can be designed to operate in gravity flow or available powered mode. The decision tree presents the basic factors used to evaluate the efficacy and applicability of BCR treatment for a particular MIW, while several case studies also included in the document present a clear evaluation of diverse site conditions and detailed analysis and evaluation of several different chemical mixtures.
#Biochemical Reactors for Treating Mining-Influenced Water (MIW)

11 years ago



Three fact sheets provide basic information about geophysical classification for munitions response.