Overview of State Approaches to Vapor Intrusion

Authors: B. Eklund, L. Beckley, V. Yates, T. McHugh
Published: September 2012 in Remediation Journal volume 22 (4) pages 7-20.


A large number of states have issued guidance addressing the vapor intrusion pathway making it difficult to keep up with various policies and requirements. We have compiled and reviewed guidance from 35 states, half of which have issued documents within the last three years. A comparison of policies among states shows reasonable consistency in some areas—for example, 20 of 23 states that provide an exclusion distance for subsurface sources of chlorinated volatile organic compounds (VOCs) use a distance of 100 feet. However, more commonly, the policy decisions vary widely. Among states, indoor air screening concentrations for the same VOC vary by more than 2,000 times and subsurface screening concentrations vary by more than 2,000,000 times. These wide discrepancies suggest a need for communication and consensus building in order to increase consistency in the management of the vapor intrusion pathway.