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# GROUNDWATER VAPOUR

Development of Generic Assessment Criteria for Assessing Vapour Risks to Human Health from Volatile Contaminants in Groundwater

SoBRA 2017

Volatile constituents in groundwater have the potential to cause risk to human health via volatilisation and migration of vapours into overlying buildings or outdoor air space followed by inhalation. Where the conceptual site model identifies this contaminant linkage as being of possible concern it is usually necessary to assess the risks further in order to determine whether they are acceptable or not.  One method that can be used is to compare measured concentrations of volatile constituents in groundwater with conservative generic assessment criteria (GAC) protective of human health via the inhalation of groundwater-derived vapours pathway.  This helps the assessor determine the level of risk associated with this particular contaminant linkage. A working group of the Society of Brownfield Risk Assessment (SoBRA) has developed a methodology and derived GAC for 64 commonly analysed volatile constituents in groundwater.  The methodology utilises the Environment Agency’s (England and Wales) CLEA model to estimate the average long-term concentration in shallow groundwater (the GAC) that would lead to tolerable/minimal risk to site occupants from vapour migration and inhalation in indoor and outdoor air from chronic exposure.  Screening values have been derived for residential and commercial land-use scenarios.  The generic screening values are intended to complement other screening methodologies (such as exclusion depths and distances) for assessing the groundwater vapour contaminant linkages.

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# BACKGROUND CONTAMINATION

Historical Development and its Effect on Soil Contamination in Urban Areas

Rebekka McIlwaine, Siobhan Cox, Rory Doherty and Mark Cave (2016)

This SoBRA funded project creates a new methodology for identifying local sources of contamination and relationships between historical urban development and groups of potentially toxic elements (PTEs) in urban soils. The Belfast Tellus data is used to create the methodology, which is then tested on Sheffield using GBASE data. Eleven PTEs are considered within this research; arsenic (As), cobalt (Co), chromium (Cr), copper (Cu), molybdenum (Mo), nickel (Ni), lead (Pb), antimony (Sb), tin (Sn), vanadium (V) and zinc (Zn). These elements are expected to be related to different geogenic and anthropogenic sources within the study areas.

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# ASBESTOS

Conceptual Framework for Asbestos Risk Assessment & Control

SoBRA 2015

The aim of the approach is to have a common framework that can scale to any number of activities that might take place prior, pre, during or post development. The key aims are to have a stepwise approach to enable effective screening of potential areas of concern; encourage appropriate and sufficient data collection and site investigation to support robust decision making; facilitate timely identification and understanding of risky activities and identify the point where mitigation and further Quantitative Risk Assessment is necessary to protect vulnerable on and off site receptors.

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# ASBESTOS

Design of an Activity Based Sampling Protocol for the Testing of Asbestos Fibre Release Potential from Residential Garden Soil

SoBRA 2015
This protocol provides a draft outline of a potential activity-based sampling approach for the testing of asbestos fibre release potential from residential garden soil as part of a staged investigation strategy for land being investigated under Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. The primary objective of the Activity-Based Sampling (ABS) protocol is to provide a reasonable worst-case estimate of current and future fibre-release and subsequent localised airborne fibre concentrations that might be possible as a result of soil disturbance.

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# DUST

Dust Monitoring Protocol for Earthwork Activities at Brownfield Sites

SoBRA 2015
The aim is to obtain robust activity-based dust generation data to be able to risk-rank different remediation, earthwork and construction activities, and better understand potential fugitive environmental emissions and employee exposures. This protocol is designed to provide a monitoring method by which different activities involving earthworks at brownfield sites can be monitored in a consistent way and the data from each monitoring exercise collated to inform the potential for dust release and the subsequent risk ranking of those activities.

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# ASBESTOS

Example Part 2a Asbestos Cement Decision Algorithm [Rev01]

SoBRA 2015
This discussion paper presents a decision algorithm for asbestos cement fragments in residential garden soil designed to support a staged investigation strategy for land being investigated under Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

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# ASBESTOS

Soil Sampling Protocol for Asbestos in Soil

SoBRA 2015
This protocol provides a draft outline of a potential sampling approach developed by the SoBRA Asbestos-in-soil sub-group. It aims to strike a balance between traditional soil survey sampling strategies and soil sampling strategies designed specifically for known asbestos containing soil, made ground and aggregate.

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# ASBESTOS

Risks to Human Health from Asbestos in Soil Workshop Report (SoBRA 2015)

Issue Date: 7th April 2015
SoBRA held a workshop on assessing risks to human health from asbestos in soil in June 2013. The workshops aims were to: support site investigation practice, laboratory analysis methods and examine risks to site workers; evaluate remediation and re-use options; and derive a decision algorithm for existing and future land users. Quantification and management of the risks posed to human health from asbestos in soil are important current topics for practitioners dealing with land affected by contamination. This report will be used to support the chapter on risk assessment in the forthcoming Joint Industry Working Group guidance on asbestos in soil. Proceedings and presentation slides from the workshop are available free to members.

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# PETROLEUM HYDROCARBONS

Petroleum Hydrocarbons Workshop Report (SoBRA 2013)

Issue Date: 24th January 2013
SoBRA held a workshop on assessing risks to groundwater from petroleum hydrocarbons in June 2012. The workshop included discussion groups on four key themes: site investigation and sampling; laboratory analysis and environmental forensics; groundwater risk assessment modelling and development of guidance; and assessment of the vapour risk from groundwater. Proceedings and presentation slides from the workshop are available free to members.

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# LEAD

Lead Workshop Report (SoBRA 2012)

Issue Date: 20th March 2012
SoBRA held a workshop on assessing risks to human health from lead in soils in June 2011. The workshop included discussion groups on the 4 key topics, namely: toxicology; sources and background concentrations; exposure assessment; and bioaccessibility. Proceedings and presentation slides from the workshop are available free to members.

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# PAH

PAH Workshop Report (SoBRA 2011)

Issue Date: 14th Feb 2011
SoBRA held a workshop on assessing risks to human health from PAHs in soils in June 2010. The workshop included discussion groups on the 4 key topics, namely: toxicology; chemistry and site analysis; exposure assessment; and bioaccessibility and plant uptake. Proceedings and presentation slides from the workshop are available free to members.

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