Q&A: NJDEP Remediation Standards
Q: What are the recent changes to the NJDEP Remediation Standards?
A: On May 17, 2021, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) adopted amendments to the Remediation Standards Rule (N.J.A.C. 7:26D). The amendments incorporate significant changes to the Soil Remediation Standards for many compounds and introduce standards for new pathways. The Direct Contact Soil Remediation Standards were separated into two exposure pathways: Ingestion-Dermal and Inhalation for both residential and non-residential properties. Additionally, Migration to Ground Water Standards and Soil Leachate Standards were introduced in place of Impact to Ground Water Screening Levels, and Indoor Air Standards replaced Indoor Air Screening Levels.
The amendments also adopted standards for some contaminants that previously didn’t have standards or screening levels and decreased standards for a number of contaminants by at least an order of magnitude. If any of those contaminants are present at your site, you may be required to expand your remediation or reopen your case.
NJDEP policy includes a six-month phase-in period allowing project teams to abide by older standards if the Remedial Action Work Plan or Remedial Action Report is submitted within six months of the adopted changes, unless that standard decreases by an order of magnitude. In this case, the phase-in period ends November 17, 2021.
About Candace Baker, LSRP
Candace Baker is a Senior Project Manager with over 25 years of experience managing environmental remediation projects in New Jersey. She serves on NJDEP’s Response Action Outcome Guidance stakeholder group and is actively involved with the Licensed Site Remediation Professionals Association (LSRPA), which is the professional organization supporting New Jersey LSRPs. She is currently serving as LSRPA’s Treasurer and a member of its Board of Trustees, Communications Committee, and Risk Management and Loss Prevention Committee.