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EPA Region 2 Rolls Out Mobile Analytical Lab; Brownfields Grant Recipients Benefit from Rapid No-Cost Results

Release Date: 03/31/2003
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(#03024) NEW YORK, N.Y. — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency unveiled its mobile analytical laboratory at the Military Ocean Terminal in Bayonne, N.J., today, marking the first full-scale use of the lab.

EPA field workers designed the mobile lab to investigate potentially contaminated sites and help cleanup efforts. This lab is primarily intended to support testing of brownfields sites, which are sites that have an actual or perceived contamination and an active potential for redevelopment or reuse.

The mobile lab provides assistance in site assessment and environmental cleanup that may be necessary before redevelopment occurs. It provides a fast and efficient means to measure environmental data in the field, and is equipped with all of the instrumentation, chemical reagents, computer hardware and software, and consumables needed to perform conventional environmental analysis - screening for both organic and inorganic contaminants.

“We are proud of the capabilities of this fully functional and easily transportable lab,” said EPA Regional Administrator Jane M. Kenny. “While it has many possible applications, its use will be especially significant to the communities like Bayonne, that can save thousands of dollars and rapidly answer the questions that precede brownfields development.”

EPA’s Brownfields Economic Redevelopment Initiative is designed to empower States, communities and other stakeholders in economic redevelopment to work together to reuse brownfields. Brownfields-grantee communities can apply to have EPA’s mobile lab perform analysis at no cost. EPA will provide mobile laboratory services to communities that need to screen sites where contaminants are known or highly suspected. The lab can characterize the nature and extent of contamination, establish risk-based response priorities and determine when cleanup is complete.

The lab was first used in Spring 2001 for limited testing at a Brownfields site in Trenton, N.J. In November 2001, it was called into service in New York City, assisting with onsite air sampling at the World Trade Center site for about eight months. Currently the lab is working with the City of Bayonne on assessment of two sites, both the Brownfields site at the Military Ocean Terminal, a former Army facility turned over to Bayonne during Base Realignment and Closure actions in 1995; and the Atlas Yacht Club, a water access and boat storage facility. This is the first time that all of the mobile lab’s analytic capabilities have been put to use.