The Air Force completed the Relative Risk Site Evaluation (RRSE) for Stratton Air National Guard Base to support sequencing of environmental restoration work.
The RRSE process is used to evaluate the relative risk posed by an environmental restoration site in relation to other sites. Restoration sites in Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) are evaluated during the RRSE process to sequence sites for Remedial Investigation.
Due to discovery of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), which includes perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS), perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), and perfluorobutane sulfonic acid (PFBS), a RRSE was completed for the sites at Stratton ANGB.
The RRSE is an important consideration in the priority setting process for Air National Guard installations to receive funding for restoration.
PFOS and PFOA are synthetic fluorinated organic compounds used in many industrial and consumer products such as nonstick cookware, stain-resistant fabric and carpet and some food packaging.
Commonly grouped with other synthetic fluorinated chemicals using the umbrella term Perfluorinated Compounds, or PFCs, PFOS and PFOA are the only two compounds with established lifetime health advisories for drinking water.
• In 1970, the Air Force began using Aqueous Film Forming Foam (AFFF), which contains PFOS/PFOA. AFFF is the most efficient extinguishing method for petroleum fires and is widely used across the firefighting industry, to include all commercial airports, to protect people and property.
• On May 19, 2016, the EPA established Lifetime Health Advisory levels of 70 parts per trillion for separate and combined PFOS and PFOA concentrations in drinking water. These compounds are classified as emerging contaminants due to evolving regulatory standards.
The Air Force is taking a three-step approach – identify, respond, prevent – to assess and respond to potential PFOS/ PFOA.
• The Air Force Civil Engineer Center is conducting a comprehensive assessment process to identify locations where PFOS/ PFOA may have been released across the Air Force at active, Reserve, Air National Guard and closed installations.
• In the U.S., AFCEC is conducting additional sampling to identify potential AFFF releases, determine the extent of the PFOS/PFOA contamination and map possible pathways to water sources.
• The Air Force’s investigation work and mitigation actions for are guided by the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, or CERCLA, any applicable state laws, and the EPA's health advisories.
The Air Force’s investigation work and response actions are guided by the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, applicable state laws and the EPA's Health Advisory for drinking water.
The Air Force is moving forward aggressively in accordance with the CERCLA process to fully investigate releases, prioritize responses and determine appropriate response actions based on risk.
Following the CERCLA process makes certain thorough investigative work is done; the process also promotes accountability, community involvement and long-term protectiveness.
Relative Risk Site Evaluation FAQ
Relative Risk Site Evaluation Report
Public Notice Letter
For more information or to submit written comments, please contact
Mr. Bill Myer, Environmental Restoration Program Manager, at:
3501 Fetchet Avenue, Joint Base Andrews, MD, 20762