NYSDEC Calls for Additional Sampling of Upper Hudson River

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) yesterday renewed its call on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to require additional sediment sampling for Polychlorinated Biphenyl (PCB) contamination in the upper Hudson River.

In a letter to EPA Regional Administrator Judith Enck, DEC identified the need to expand the analysis of sediments by over 1400 samples in the Upper Hudson River, both in areas that were dredged, as well as those that were not, in order to determine the effectiveness of the dredging.

The expanded sampling is critical to gauge whether the project will meet remediation goals identified in the Record of Decision (ROD), and the sampling must be undertaken before EPA issues its five-year review in early 2017.

EPA currently plans to collect only 375 samples, or fewer than 10 samples for every mile of river. DEC has determined that EPA’s sampling plans are inadequate and would not provide enough data to assess the efficacy of the remediation.

According to the NYSDEC, at least 1,800 samples are needed to have the statistical power to draw timely, science-based conclusions from the sampling results.