Overview of state approaches to vapor intrusion: 2018

Authors: B. Eklund, L. Beckley, R. Rago
Published: September 2018 in Remediation Journal.


Regulatory requirements for the evaluation of vapor intrusion vary significantly among states. For
site owners and responsible parties that have sites in different regulatory jurisdictions, one challenge
is to know and understand how the requirements or expectations for vapor intrusion differ
from one jurisdiction to the next. Differences in requirements can make it difficult to manage sites
in a consistent manner across jurisdictions. Eklund, Folkes, et al. (2007, February, Environmental
Manager, 10–14) published an overview of state guidance for vapor intrusion in 2007 that
provided a detailed summary of pathway screening values and other key vapor intrusion policies.
An update by Eklund, Beckley, et al. (2012, Remediation, 22, 7–20) was published in 2012, which
expanded the evaluation to additional states. Since that time, numerous states have substantially
revised their guidance and some states that did not have vapor intrusion-specific guidance have
issued new guidance. This article provides an update to the 2012 study. For each state, the review
includes tabulations of the types of screening values included (e.g., groundwater, soil, soil gas,
indoor air) and the screening values for selected chemicals that commonly drive vapor intrusion
investigations (i.e., trichloroethylene [TCE], tetrachloroethylene, and benzene) along with other
compounds of potential interest. In addition, for each state, the article summarizes a number of
key policy decisions that are important for the investigation of vapor intrusion including: distance
screening criteria, default subsurface to indoor air attenuation factors, mitigation criteria, and
policies for evaluation of short-term TCE exposure.

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