Superfund Research Program
Developing and Evaluating Technology to Measure PAH Fate and Exposures
Project Leader: Kim A. Anderson
Grant Number: P42ES016465
Funding Period: 2009-2025
In 2016, Chemical mixtures were collected from four Superfund sites (Wycoff and Eagle, Washington; Anniston, Alabama; Portland Harbor Mega Superfund (PHMS), Oregon, and Oregon’s McCormick and Baxter Superfund (McC&B) sites), and along with two tribal partners, at sites in northern Washington. The research team has demonstrated a new soil pore air passive sampler (PS) at Wycoff and Eagle, Washington, Anniston Alabama. After a train derailment along the Columbia River in Oregon, the team tested the new soil air unit using their polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAH) and polychlorinated biphenol (PCB) analytical methods.
The research team’s passive sampling sediment porewater and water technology, developed as part of the Oregon State University SRP, was used by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 10 and Oregon Department of Environmental Quality to make decisions related to the McCormick and Baxter Superfund site in Oregon and the effectiveness of a sediment cap remediation. The final report can be found on the EPA website(8161 KB) posted in September 2016. This is one of the first times a regulator decision has been made with SRP data and SRP developed technology. The McCormick and Baxter Superfund Site is located on the Willamette River in Portland, Oregon and has PAH contaminated soils and sediments from historical creosote operations. As part of an Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (ODEQ) ten year study to assess the effectiveness of the sediment cap, passive sampling devices from Kim Anderson’s lab were deployed by U.S. EPA Region 10 divers in both sediment and water at the site. Included in this study was a newly designed passive sampling sediment probe which allowed for deployment in the rocky armoring of the sediment cap. Based on data from this study, the ODEQ reported that the sediment cap appears to be effective in meeting its remedial objectives.
Passive sampling (PS) extracts and real-world mixtures were exposed to terrestrially relevant UV. Precursor and transformation of PAHs were determined. The team paired PS with resident organisms in PHSM and on tribal lands and were able to successfully predict crayfish PAH concentrations from a simply linear model based on PS water concentrations from PHSM. The research team is currently analyzing clams from tribal lands paired with sediment passive samplers.