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1 Eco-risk, Focused on Sediments: Status in Oregon Joan P. Snyder Stoel Rives LLP.

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Presentation on theme: "1 Eco-risk, Focused on Sediments: Status in Oregon Joan P. Snyder Stoel Rives LLP."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 Eco-risk, Focused on Sediments: Status in Oregon Joan P. Snyder Stoel Rives LLP

2 2 Topics to Be Addressed: Existing DEQ Guidance—Sediment Screening Level Values DEQ initiatives –Informal Stakeholder Discussions –DEQ Clearinghouse on Eco-risk issues –Draft Guidance for Evaluation of Sediments at State Cleanup Sites –Draft Portland Harbor Joint (DEQ/EPA) Source Control Strategy –DEQ participation in RSET process

3 3 Existing DEQ Guidance DEQ Guidance for Ecological Risk Assessment--Level II Screening Level Values for Freshwater and Marine Sediment (Dec. 2001) –Not promulgated as rule –No stakeholder input

4 4 Are way conservative Are based on numbers developed as screening values –A few based on probable effects levels (Upper Effects Thresholds (UETs) from NOAA Screening Quick Reference Tables (SQuiRTs)) –Many based on threshold effects levels (NOAA Threshold Effects Levels (TELs) or lowest ARCs H. azteca TELs; Threshold Effects Concentrations (TEC) from MacDonald & Ingersoll 1996; Lowest Apparent Effects Thresholds (LAETs) from Washington Department of Ecology) DEQ Guidance for Ecological Risk Assessment --Level II Screening Level Values Freshwater and Marine Sediment

5 5 –Bioaccumulation screening values based on calculations using Oak Ridge National Labs formula for bioaccumulation to mink and great blue heron, based on series of conservative assumptions

6 6 DEQ Guidance for Ecological Risk Assessment --Level II Screening Level Values Freshwater and Marine Sediment Examples of conservatism –Zinc bioaccumulation SLV = 3 ppm Zinc 90 th % soil background, Clark County,=96 ppm –Bioaccumulation values given for substances not normally considered bioaccumulative—e.g. selenium, thallium, carbon tetrachloride, ethanol, methanol, methylethyl ketone –Some SLVs significantly lower than routinely available laboratory detection limits (e.g. individual PCB Aroclors)

7 7 DEQ Guidance for Ecological Risk Assessment-- Level II Screening Level Values Freshwater and Marine Sediment Summary –Screening tool that usually won’t screen much out –NOT cleanup levels –Could be of value if you have limited Chemicals of Interest at your site, and if DEQ lets you focus only on your COIs (which it should)

8 8 DEQ Initiatives--Informal DEQ/Stakeholder Discussion Issues (July 2003-Jan. 2005) –Absence of clear management objectives in the eco-risk process, and need for DEQ Project Managers/Risk Assessors to use professional judgment along the way to narrow the assessment –Identifying and focusing on ecologically important assessment endpoints and representative receptors –Working within regulatory definition of Local Population and Acceptable Risk Level for ecological receptors –Taking natural and anthropogenic background into account earlier in assessment process –Taking into account likely or possible remedial actions

9 9 DEQ Initiatives—Re-institution of DEQ Internal Clearinghouse Workgroup Developed out of informal stakeholder discussions Initially intended to reach DEQ consensus on important eco-risk policy issues Current focus is on site-specific eco-risk issues –Unclear whether Responsible Parties will have chance to make presentation to Clearinghouse

10 10 DEQ Initiatives--Draft Guidance for Evaluation of Sediments at State Cleanup Sites External Review Draft published July 31, 2002; revised outline provided Sept. 9, 2003; put on hold Jan –Overall Acceptance of “Lines of Evidence” approach –Sediment chemistry –Sediment toxicity –Benthic invertebrate community ecology and –Bioaccumulation

11 11 DEQ Initiatives--Draft Guidance for Evaluation of Sediments at State Cleanup Sites Level I Scoping Development of Conceptual Site Model Decision question: is there a possibility of direct or indirect exposure –Level II Screening—draft proposals For benthic toxicity—fail if exceed Mean Sediment Guideline Quotient (of PECs) of 0.5 For bioaccumulating substances—fail if exceed lowest commercially available practical quantitation limit (PQL) For Human health—fail if exceed Region 9 Preliminary Remediation goals (PRGs) for industrial soil

12 12 DEQ Initiatives--Draft Guidance for Evaluation of Sediments at State Cleanup Sites –Level III Site-specific baseline risk assessment Benthic Community evaluation –Bioassays –Benthic ecology evaluation Bioaccumulation Evaluation –Bioaccumulation bioassays Site Specific Risk Assessment –Eco-receptors –Human health (direct exposure, indirect (consumption)) Summary: $$$$$$$$ –And, if you need statistical significance: $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

13 13 DEQ Initiatives--Draft Guidance for Evaluation of Sediments at State Cleanup Sites Over 300 individual comments received on initial draft from more than 15 commenters Sediment Evaluation Guidance Advisory Panel (SEG-TAP) formed in 2003 –Met May 2003, Nov. 2003, July 2004 (conf. Call) –On hold

14 14 DEQ Initiatives--Draft Portland Harbor Joint (DEQ/EPA) Source Control Strategy DEQ still in discussions with EPA attempting to finalize this document DEQ has provided draft Joint Source Control Strategy Sediment Screening Values for Portland Harbor –Toxicity Screens based primarily on MacDonald & Ingersoll PECs (better than TECs in Level II SLVs)

15 15 Draft Portland Harbor Joint (DEQ/EPA) Source Control Strategy Unclear what result will be based on exceedance of PEC –DEQ “preference for response action in lieu of, or in addition to, further evaluation” –Could be benthic toxicity testing or other assessment Approach in Portland Harbor should be refined after Portland Harbor baseline risk assessment concluded, particularly evaluation of correlation between benthic toxicity and chemistry

16 16 Draft Portland Harbor Joint (DEQ/EPA) Source Control Strategy Bioaccumulation screens based on Level II SLVs (based on ORNL formula) for (tentatively) –Chlorinated pesticides –PCBs –PAHs –PCDD/PCDFs –Mercury –TBT DEQ preference for response action

17 17 DEQ Initiatives--DEQ Participation in RSET Process Regional Sediment Evaluation Team (RSET): Army Corps, DEQ, DOE, EPA, Idaho DEQ, NOAA, USFWS, Tribes Next meeting of RSET April 6-7, 2005, Tumwater, Washington (all invited) Goal--Draft revisions to Dredged Material Evaluation Framework by end of year

18 18 Tips/Thoughts Stay focused on your site’s COIs and a realistic CSM Remember that Screening Values are screening values –DEQ wants to jump from screening to remedial action –DEQ’s Lever—cost of assessment Bioaccumulation—is it in fish tissue?

19 19 Tips/Thoughts (cont.) Distinguish between DEQ’s reluctance to determine “No Further Evaluation is necessary” and their ability, as a project management tool, to prioritize Push back/invite dialogue—DEQ knows these issues need work If you have sediment issues, watch RSET process


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