The WV TAP Project Team Provides Public Briefing to the People of West Virginia

Released: 21-Mar-2014 4:00 PM EDT
Source Newsroom: Toxicology Excellence for Risk Assessment
Contact Information

Available for logged-in reporters only

Newswise — On Friday March 28, the WV TAP project team will formally present their findings to the people of West Virginia including new laboratory testing results. The event will be held in the Ferrell Hall Auditorium located on the campus of West Virginia State University located in Institute, West Virginia 25112. The auditorium, on the 2nd floor of Ferrell Hall, has theatre style audience seating for 400 persons on the lower level and 200 persons in the balcony. The event will begin at 9:30 AM EDT and conclude at approximately 3:00 PM EDT.

The event is open to the public. Organizations should contact Dr. Andrew Whelton for access coordination at ajwhelton@southalabama.edu.

The WV TAP team is also actively working to find organizations interested in live broadcasting and live streaming the event onto the Internet for those persons unable to attend. Regional, national, and international coverage of the event is expected. Those organizations with capability to broadcast the entire event live for the benefit of the public should contact Dr. Andrew Whelton.

During the event, the following information will be presented:
(1) Introduction to the WV TAP Team and Website
(2) The Crude MCHM Odor Threshold Study
(3) The Ten Home Study: Resident Interviews and Tap Water Analysis
(4) Examination of Tentatively Identified Compounds and their Implications
(5) Expanded Home Tap Water Monitoring Plan: Preliminary Results
(6) The Expert Panel
(7) Project Summary and Next Steps

The following individuals are scheduled to present at the meeting:
• Mr. Jeffrey Rosen, President of Corona Environmental Consulting, LLC, Scituate, Massachusetts, USA
• Dr. Andrew J. Whelton, Assistant Professor of Environmental Engineering, University of South Alabama, Mobile, Alabama USA
• Dr. Michael J. McGuire, President of Michael J. McGuire, Inc., Santa Monica, California, USA
• Dr. Andy Eaton, President of Eurofins Laboratories, Monrovia, California, USA
Expert Panel Meets to Critically Examine Available Data

The WV TAP team will be conducting an expert review of the screening levels and will be reporting these results on April 1. A press conference will be conducted in Charleston. The findings from the panel of experts in toxicology, risk assessment, and water contamination will be presented. The time and location of this event will be determined in the coming days.

As part of the WV TAP project, the Expert Panel will review and discuss the available toxicology data and the scientific support for the West Virginia Screening Level established at 10 parts per billion (ppb). They will discuss the initial starting value of 1 part per million (1,000 ppb) established by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and then consider if the additional safety factor applied by the State of West Virginia was protective of public health, based on available data. The panel will identify data gaps and make recommendations for additional studies or analyses that could strengthen the screening level and reduce uncertainty.

The Expert Panel is being organized by Ms. Jacqueline Patterson, Vice-President of Toxicology Excellence for Risk Assessment (TERA) located in Cincinnati, Ohio USA. TERA is a world leading independent non-profit organization with a mission benefit the protection of public health through the best use of toxicity data for risk assessment. TERA provides support to communities, government agencies, NGOs and industry. TERA’s highly regarded staff of board certified toxicologists have evaluated chemical toxicity data and developed risk values for many of the chemicals of recent public health concern. TERA utilizes this extensive expertise in toxicology and risk assessment to organize independent expert reviews of chemical assessments and contamination events.

Travel arrangements are being finalized for the Expert Panel members. Once finalized the panel members will be announced. Dr. Michael Dourson will Chair the Expert Panel. He has served as President of the TERA in Cincinnati, Ohio since 1995. Dr. Dourson has over 30 years experience in toxicology, risk assessment and derivation of risk values. While with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) he chaired the EPA's Reference Dose (RfD) Work Group, was a charter member of the US EPA's Risk Assessment Forum, and chief of the group that helped create the Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS). Dr. Dourson received his Ph.D. in Toxicology from the University of Cincinnati and is a Diplomate of the American Board of Toxicology and a Fellow of the Academy of Toxicological Sciences. He has served on or chaired many expert panels in the US EPA, Food and Drug Administration (FDA), National Sanitation Foundation International, and independent organizations. He served as President of the American Board of Toxicology and Secretary for the Society for Risk Analysis, and has published more than 100 papers on risk assessment methods.

As part of the Expert Panel’s activities, panelists will draw upon the scientific review document authored by Utah State University Professor Craig Adams. The document can be found on the WV TAP website and is entitled Health Effects for Chemicals in 2014 West Virginia Chemical Release: Crude MCHM Compounds, PPH and DiPPH. Version 1.5. The document provides a literature review summarizing toxicity information on the chemicals that were spilled into the Elk River in West Virginia in January 2014 from the Freedom Industries facility.

In the spirit of the Expert Panel’s independence, panelists will not be discussing either the toxicity of the Elk River spill's chemicals or the screening values before the independent peer review panel meets. All media requests should be directed to the WV TAP project leaders listed at the top of this press release.

Organizations interested in participating in the April 1 event should contact Dr. Andrew Whelton at ajwhelton@southalabama.edu. Email is the best mode of communication.


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