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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and other federal, state and local agencies have collected extensive environmental monitoring data from the World Trade Center site and nearby areas in Manhattan, Brooklyn and New Jersey. Since September 11, EPA has taken samples of the air, dust, water, river sediments and drinking water and analyzed them for the presence of pollutants that might pose a health risk to response workers at the World Trade Center site and the public. The samples are evaluated against a variety of benchmarks, standards and guidelines established to protect public health under various conditions. EPA is collecting data from more than 20 fixed air monitors in and around ground zero and additional monitors in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island. The Agency is also using portable sampling equipment to collect data from a range of locations.
Air: Fixed Monitors in lower Manhattan:
Asbestos - EPA analyzed 96 samples taken in and around ground zero from November 1 through November 3. All samples showed results less than 70 structures per millimeter squared, which is the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA) standard for allowing children to re-enter school buildings after asbestos removal activities. This brings the total number of air samples collected and analyzed for lower Manhattan to 1701, with 28 samples above the standard (27 of these were collected prior to September 30 and one on October 9).
Air: Fixed Monitors outside Manhattan:
Asbestos - Additional asbestos monitors have been placed at Public School (P.S.) 154 (33 East 135th St., Bronx), Intermediate School 143 (511 W. 182nd St., Manhattan), P.S. 274 (800 Bushwick Ave, Brooklyn), P.S. 44 (80 Maple Parkway, Staten Island), and P.S. 199 (3290 48th St., Queens). From October 14 to October 23, thirty-three asbestos samples were collected and analyzed from these locations. All the results showed no exceedances of the AHERA re-entry standard.
Air: Fixed Monitors in New Jersey:
Asbestos - Four air samples were taken in New Jersey on November 1. All samples showed results less than school re-entry standard. This brings the total number of samples collected and analyzed in New Jersey to 177, with zero above the standard.
Staten Island Landfill:
Air (Asbestos) - Eighty-seven samples were collected from on October 31 through November 3. All but one of the samples showed results less than the school re-entry standard. One sample collected on October 31, from Location 12A (wash tent), exceeded the AHERA standard. This incident is being investigated further. Three samples collected on November 1 were not analyzed due to filter overloading; these samplers were located around the mess and supply tent and wash operations areas. Two sample locations on November 1 and two locations on November 2 and 3rd experienced sampler pump failure, deeming the results invalid.
U.S. Government Website