Providing High Quality Analytical Data to Support EPA On-Site Response Activities

About this Program

A natural disaster, terrorist attack, major accident, or failed industrial operation can lead to severe health and environmental problems.  To improve EPA’s emergency response capabilities, the Agency tasked CSS with establishing a state-of-the-science mobile analytical laboratory system. We set up and operate 10 mobile laboratory units providing sample preparation, analysis, storage, and waste management areas. Working in these highly specialized units since 2009, CSS’ chemists analyze air, sediment, soil, water, swab, and wipe matrices collected from affected sites. We produce NELAC-compliant data in near-real time, speeding EPA’s ability to make decisions that protect first responders and improve site cleanup.

The mobile analytical units and our security-cleared chemists are capable of testing for both chemical warfare agents (CWAs) and toxic industrial chemicals. When not mobilized for a specific response or special security event, our chemists develop specialized analytical methods and standard operating procedures, and support EPA training programs. We also collaborate on response and research activities with EPA Regional staff, the National Homeland Security Research Center, the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigations, and the Department of Defense.

Mobile analytical units are ready to:

  • be on the road within 6 hours of notification from EPA
  • accept samples within 6 hours of arrival on site
  • Operate for 4 days without restocking/refueling
  • Process 100 samples per day
  • Operate on a 24-hour work cycle

The results of our analyses have been used to reduces turn-around for NELAC-compliant data to near-real time. This rapid availability of reliable data in turn speeds EPA’s ability to make decisions that protect first responders and speed site cleanup. 

Testimonials

Please extend my sincere gratitude to everyone who moved mountains (including moving through mountainsthese past weeks to get mobile lab support to California.”

Janet G. McCabe, Deputy Administrator, USEPA

I want to thank you for your commitment and hard work supporting the Red Hill Drinking Water Emergency. We’re serving a critical role in the response and yesterday we eclipsed the 1000 samples analyzed mark. Your support is being recognized bi-weekly by the most senior levels of EPA Region 9 and HQ leadership.”  

Edward Argenta, Jr., Branch Chief, Field Operations Branch, CBRN CMAD

Additional Projects

Response at Contaminated Sites and Natural Disasters Nationwide

On-Site Support for EPA’s Office of Land and Emergency Management (OLEM) – CSS provides expert technical guidance and field support at hazardous and contaminated sites, including sites under the Superfund program.

Social Values Relative to Wind Energy

CSS assisted in the assessment of social values related to understanding and support of offshore wind energy sitings off North and South Carolina.

ITC Tank Farm Fire Emergency Response

In response to a dangerous fire EPA ordered CSS’ senior field operations specialists to a facility near Houston where massive tanks stored highly flammable liquids to help manage emergency response activities.

Earth & Space Science Support & Operations

We deliver scientific support to advance our clients’ research goals.

Safety, Health, & Environmental

We provide our clients with tools to protect their workforce, the public, and the environment.

Emergency Preparedness & Response

We help our clients prepare for and protect the health and environment of communities after disasters and hazmat releases.

Environmental Resource Assessment & Management

We apply science to address challenges affecting the nation’s natural resources.

Human Health Risk Assessment

We help advance the understanding of chemical effects on people and the environment.

Facilities Operations & Maintenance

We understand your facility support needs and deliver customized solutions.

IT Services

Our IT solutions meet clients’ evolving needs.

Get in touch

Contact us to learn more about our projects, capabilities, solutions, and service offerings.