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Call for Environmental Specialists to Revise Sediment Collection Standard

Committee E47 on Biological Effects and Environmental Fate is revising ASTM E 1391 (2002), Standard Guide for Collection, Storage, Characterization, and Manipulation of sediment for toxicological testing. An E47 task group is updating the standard with new EPA findings and invites participation from representatives of state agencies, private consultants, and other environmental professionals.

An E47 task group, chaired by Chris Ingersoll, aquatic toxicologist, Columbia Environmental Research Center, U.S. Geological Survey, Columbia, Mo., will base the revision on new literature and methods released in U.S. EPA 2001, Methods for collection, storage, and manipulation of sediments for chemical and toxicological analyses: Technical manual, EPA-823-B-01-002, Washington, D.C.

Ingersoll explains why the revision is important. “Over the past decade,” he says, “this standard has been used by various government organizations (e.g., federal, state, and international), by private industry, and universities to establish methods for designing and conducting sediment assessments. This has included studies to evaluate the toxicity of chemicals accumulated at a site of interest (e.g., a U.S. EPA Superfund site) or studies to evaluate the toxicity of a chemical added to sediment (e.g., by spiking a chemical into a clean sediment). These organizations use this standard to establish methods for how to best collect and handle sediment samples and how to characterize the physical (e.g., grain size) or chemical (e.g., concentrates of contaminants) characteristics of sediment samples.”

As well as new literature and methods, the revision will include additional guidance on sampling, design, and sediment collection, says Ingersoll: “A second component of this revision will be to consolidate guidance on sediment or invertebrate sampling equipment, presented in several individual E47 standards, into one single standard (as an annex to E 1391).”

To participate in this activity, contact Chris Ingersoll, Columbia Environmental Research Center, U.S. Geological Survey, Columbia, Mo. (phone: 573/876-1819). Committee E47 meets April 6-10 in Kansas City, Mo.

For meeting or membership details, contact Scott Orthey, manager, Technical Committee Operations, ASTM International (phone: 610/832-9730).

Copyright 2003, ASTM