Air Monitoring: Garfield Avenue Group
(Site Nos. 114, 132, 133, 135, 137, 143 & 186)
Protection of human health is a priority during PPG
Industries’ clean-up operations at its chromium sites, including the Garfield Avenue Group of sites. To protect the community, PPG is using proven containment and control measures that have been approved by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection following a review by the independent technical consultant.
Among these protective measures is a dust-suppression plan designed to prevent excavated materials, including hexavalent chromium, from becoming airborne. Elements of the plan include water misting of work areas, placing tarps on stockpiles of excavated material, spraying surfaces with dust-suppression materials and restricting truck traffic to paved areas.
PPG has installed a combination of fixed and portable air monitoring stations at the perimeter of the Garfield Avenue Group of cleanup sites to ensure safe conditions continue to be maintained during cleanup activities. Some of the monitors are only used while work is taking place but others operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Data from these monitors are posted to this website.
Air samples are collected, analyzed for chromium and the results are compared to the acceptable air concentration limits established by NJDEP specifically for the Garfield Avenue Group of cleanup sites. The limit for hexavalent chromium at the Garfield Avenue Group of cleanup sites is 49 nanograms per cubic meter of air, which is considered to be protective of human health based on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency assumptions for cancer risk. PPG must meet NJDEP’s acceptable air concentration limit for the duration of the remediation. Monitoring for specific compounds such as chromium requires samples be collected and sent to a lab for analysis.
Dust, meanwhile, can be measured in real time while work is taking place, allowing workers to take immediate action designed to protect community health if needed. As a result, PPG continuously measures dust as a surrogate for hexavalent chrome at
a combination of fixed and portable air monitoring locations. The fixed monitors take measurements 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The NJDEP-approved air monitoring plan established a limit on total dust of 333 micrograms per cubic meter measured on a 15-minute average basis. This limit was derived based upon hexavalent chromium concentrations at the site. Full-time air monitoring technicians located on site while work is being conducted review these readings to control site operations and implement additional dust-suppression measures as needed to protect the community.