Active Teams

Chemicals of Emerging Concern

Team Leaders: Paula Panzino (AZDEQ) & Vivek Mathrani (CADTSC) 

Chemicals of emerging concern are an issue that often demands an immediate response by state regulatory agencies and requires a clear procedure on how to identify, evaluate, and manage them. Once an emerging chemical is identified, public concern and interest may become elevated, requiring States to rapidly respond. Regulatory agencies, and the regulated community, need to more effectively address exposure to emerging chemicals while meeting the expectations of concerned or interested public stakeholders. The ITRC Chemicals of Emerging Concern team will create a framework for anticipating and responding to emerging chemicals, built on lessons learned from the emergence of PFAS and coupled with proactive identification of potential future chemicals. 

Sediment Cap Update

Team Leaders: Wesley Thomas (ORDEQ)

Sediment Capping is a containment technology that involves isolating contaminated sediments from the surrounding aquatic environment using a clean layer of geological material and or synthetic liners; these caps are effective long-term if they are physically stable and provide sufficient chemical isolation to achieve remediation goals. For sediment caps to remain effective long-term, there needs to be a clear guidance on the key aspects and activities of design. The sediment cap guidance produced by this ITRC team will facilitate greater consistency and efficiency in completing cap designs, including monitoring plans. 

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Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR)

Team Leaders: Drummond “Dusty” Earley (UTDEQ) & Kelsey Bufford (OKDEQ)

In the United States, groundwater is a major resource, with 41% of the population relying on it for drinking water, which supplies freshwater for irrigation, domestic use, public use, industrial, and mining. Groundwater depletion occurs when the natural replenishment process is too slow for the demands of a groundwater aquifer. Managed Aquifer Recharge (MAR) is a man-made process of groundwater replenishment that involves injecting water into aquifer recharge wells. The MAR Team will produce a Technical Guidance Document and Training that will evaluate the potential uses of MAR, the factors for the safe and successful implementation and innovative characterization, and modeling tools to appropriately place MAR infrastructure. 

Ethylene Oxide Emissions (EtO)

Team Leaders: Keisha Long (SCDHEC) & April Lazzaro (MIEGLE)

Ethylene oxide (EtO) is a flammable, colorless gas used to make other chemicals for a range of products, including antifreeze, textiles, plastics, detergents, and adhesives. Currently, there are questions about how background EtO should be defined because of mobile source emissions causing disparate levels of EtO in the environment, and there are also various analytical methods available and employed to measure EtO, which yields inconsistency in measurement and management. The ITRC team will explore background EtO to better differentiate between point and nonpoint source emissions, and the various methods used to analyze EtO to create compressive and consistent resources on where, when, and how to analyze and manage EtO.

Environmental Data Management Best Practices

Team Leaders: Doug Morrison (NYDEC) & Brian Pointer (NCDENR)

Effective data management serves as the foundation for accurate data analyses, data visualization, and sound decision-making. However, in the broad environmental community there is currently a lack of standardized and consistent data management practices necessary to ensure rapid access to high quality data, and to minimize the risks involved in making costly business and regulatory decisions. The goal of the team is to seek consensus on the current patchwork of guidelines for data management to develop Environmental Data Management Best Practices that can be applied across a wide spectrum of environmental data. The Team aims to be a platform for the integration and cohesion of data management policies across environmental disciplines and programs through online implementation trainings and community forums.

Environmental Data Management

Microplastics

Team Leaders: Kim Nimmer (NCDEQ) & Valerie Hanley (CADTSC)

Although microplastics are small — plastic debris less than five millimeters long — they pose one of the largest emerging threats to the global environmental community today. Microplastics have been introduced to the environment over the last 50 years through plastic refuse which has been broken down, and particles in health and beauty products which have entered the waste stream. Recent studies have shown their harmful effects on environmental media, due to their chemical nature and persistence. The ITRC Microplastics Team will develop free resources and fact sheets designed to provide the latest information and best management practices for the most important issues surrounding microplastics.

Microplastics

Effective Application of Guidance Documents to Hydrocarbon Sites

Team Leaders: Tom Fox (CODLE) & Richard Spiese (VTDEC)

While ITRC guidance already exists for hydrocarbon impacted sites, such as the PVI, LNAPL-3 and TPH technical regulatory documents, there are many situations where these guidance documents overlap. These documents do not acknowledge interrelated disciplines, and as such, they become harder to follow when reviewed together. This team will work to develop a training series on the implementation of these guidance documents, in order to help professionals understand what information is contained within each document and how to apply these concepts holistically at a site.

Effective Application of Guidance Documents to Hydrocarbon Sites

PFAS

Team Leaders: Sandra Goodrow (NJDEP) & Kate Emma Schlosser (NHDES)

The state of the science and understanding of PFAS is constantly evolving. The goal of the PFAS continuation team is to update existing ITRC technical resources to reflect the latest in the science of PFAS; develop video training resources; establish a new subgroup dedicated to collecting data, information, and scientific knowledge to support states in their work to surface water; and perform classroom trainings based on ITRC's published technical resources.

PFAS

Soil Background Concentrations

Team Leaders: Bonnie Brooks (WA Ecology) & Claudio Sorrentino (CADTSC)

Soil background concentrations are important to consider when conducting human health and ecological risk
assessments. Currently, there is inconsistency in the way stakeholders define background, use sampling methods, and apply statistical methods in risk assessment. Other sources of valuable information such as geochemical evaluations and forensic methods are not widely used or accepted.

The Use of Soil Background Concentrations in Risk Assessment Team will create a guidance document and training resources that will provide a useful framework for using soil background concentrations in risk assessment and its application to soil-like materials such as sediments and mining sites.

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Strategies for Preventing and Managing Harmful Cyanobacterial Blooms (Benthic)

Team Leaders: Rebecca Stanton (CAOEHHA) & Benjamin Holcomb (UTDEQ)

Established as an extension for ITRC’s existing project, Strategies for Preventing Harmful Cyanobacterial Blooms, this team will explore further into the subject of Benthic Harmful Cyanobacterial Blooms. The project will expand on existing descriptions of Benthic Harmful Cyanobacterial Blooms mentioned in other ITRC documents by providing in-depth information on background, screening and sampling methodology, and toxin thresholds, as well as management and prevention strategies and communication and response planning for these blooms. The Benthic Harmful Cyanobacterial Blooms Team plans develop a new technical guidance document as well as live and recorded training modules.

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Performance-Based Optimization of Pump and Treat Systems

Team Leaders: Janet Waldron (MassDEP) & Michael Sexton (VADEQ)

Pump-and-treat (P&T) systems have been one of the most commonly used methods for hydraulic containment and treatment of contaminated groundwater at sites with large groundwater plumes. Optimization of pump-and-treat remedies is important for maintaining contaminant removal effectiveness throughout the remedy operation lifetime and managing the system toward an exit strategy. This proposed project aims to develop technical guidance materials and training modules that summarize existing information and best practices, and develop a systemic and adaptive optimization framework specifically for P&T well-network design and management.

Quickening Environmental Solutions & Training (QUEST)

Team Leaders: Thomas Wallace (MDEQ) & John McVey (SDDENR) 

Over the years, ITRC products have helped to provide a common understanding and acceptance of environmental challenges and solutions. However, while regulatory acceptance can find its way into law or policy, that acceptance can also be lost when staff move on, and many beneficial ITRC products go underutilized because newer staff are unaware of their existence. This proposal seeks to develop trainings, video modules and web tools, incorporating existing ITRC products to help new environmental program staff gain rapid exposure to years of lessons learned and proven best practices, helping them better understand the nuances of the environmental profession