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The American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), through its various technical committees, performs a unique service which neither the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) nor any other federal agencies could match through any means. ASTM provides a common and neutral meeting ground for technical experts from industry, academia, and federal agencies to freely exchange ideas without the often-present suspicion and territoriality. Through its established principle of voluntary, consensus standards development, ASTM provides a forum for all interested parties to arrive at proven and accepted methods—the importance of which cannot be stressed strongly enough. We in EPA, who are involved in the development of methodologies for monitoring environmental quality, fully appreciate the value of your efforts and pledge to continue the spirit of cooperation that has guided the work in ASTM Committee D19 on Water.
Assistant administrator, Research and Development, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, D.C.,