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EPA Works to Improve Pollution Detection Methods

Release Date: 11/03/2004
Contact Information:

Contact: Cathy Milbourn 202-564-7824 /

(11/03/04) EPA is withdrawing its March 2003 proposal to revise detection and quantitation procedures used in water permitting and monitoring and allowing the existing 1986 procedures to stand. The existing procedures are being left in place in order for EPA to conduct additional discussions with stakeholders on remaining technical issues related to quantitation and detection. Detection indicates the presence of a pollutant in a sample, while quantitation indicates how much of the pollutant is in the sample. These procedures are ways to pre-test laboratory instruments to confirm that they accurately measure a specific chemical pollutant in a water sample. Each laboratory must prove to the permitting authority (states, regions, or tribes) that it can operate within these specifications. The Agency will announce in December how stakeholder discussions will proceed. EPA is also releasing a revised assessment document entitled “Revised Assessment of Detection and Quantitation Approaches,” which completes the terms of a settlement agreement with industry petitioners. Information about both actions is available at: .