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February 26, 2015
 
 

New protocol for the Derivation of Groundwater Quality Guidelines for Use at Contaminated Sites

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The Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment (CCME) announced January 9, 2015, the release of A Protocol for the Derivation of Groundwater Quality Guidelines for Use at Contaminated Sites. The protocol:

  • establishes a framework for developing Canadian Groundwater Quality Guidelines that ensures an appropriate level of protection for both human and environmental receptors;
  • is a companion to A Protocol for the Derivation of Environmental and Human Health Soil Quality Guidelines (CCME, 2006) which should be consulted for additional background and underlying principles;
  • considers the effects of contaminated groundwater exposure on human and ecological receptors; and 
  • addresses groundwater exposure through: saturated zone transport to surface water; rising water table into shallow soils; migration of vapours into indoor air; and use of well water. 
The final generic groundwater quality guideline is based on the lowest value generated by the environmental and human health approaches. Generic guidelines can be altered to account for sitespecific conditions.

 

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