Analysis of Matrix-Specific Environmental Samples for CWA Degradation Products

Oral Presentation

Prepared by S. Willison1, T. Smith2, T. O'Neill3, S. Chattopdhyay4, M. Magnuson1, R. Campisano1
1 - EPA, 26 W. Martin Luther King Dr, Cincinnati, OH, 45268, United States
2 - U.S. EPA, Office of Emergency Management, William Jefferson Clinton Building, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, N. W., Washington, DC, 20460, United States
3 - MRIGlobal Research Institute, 425 Volker Boulevard, Kansas City, MO, 64110, United States
4 - Tetra Tech, 250 W Court St, Cincinnati, OH, 45202, United States

Contact Information: [email protected]; 513-569-7253


Site characterization for remediation and restoration of a civilian area contaminated with CWAs and their degradation products will require testing involving various matrix types (e.g., soil, surface, water, air), corresponding to the analysis of potentially thousands of samples. Analysis of the degradation products are important because these analytes can provide valuable information related to the spread of the parent agent, potential areas of high concentration, and an evaluation of the parent agent’s degradation in the environment following an incident. Degradation products can be characterized as appropriate indicators for most CWAs due to their lack of presence in the environment, providing a distinct chemical signature for CWA agent identification. The nation’s laboratory analysis capacity and capability still requires improvement for analyzing environmental samples following an incident. The same can be said for the remediation and restoration phases of an incident as well. Therefore, matrix-specific sampling and analysis methods are needed to ensure that an affected area is properly remediated prior to reoccupation. A considerable gap still exists for degradation products, particularly those with similar toxic properties as the parent agent. The purpose of this work is to present method development or method evaluation studies for the detection of CWAs degradation products (e.g., EA2192, Lewisite byproducts, and nerve agent degradation products) in various environmental matrices of interest. Matrix examples will include urban materials for surface sampling (from wipes), soil, and water samples.