AMS assisted municipal participants in the Central Coast Long-term Environmental Assessment Network (CCLEAN) to fulfill PFAS monitoring requirements for influent, effluent, and biosolids sampling.

In 2020, the State of California issued Order WQ 2020-0015-DWQ to municipal wastewater dischargers, which required conduct of a one-year quarterly sampling program for a prescribed list of PFAS compounds. Compounds were to be analyzed according to US Department of Defense laboratory protocols. Data and laboratory reports were required to be uploaded to the California State GeoTracker database.

AMS assisted municipal CCLEAN participants to fulfill the PFAS monitoring requirements for influent, effluent, and biosolids matrices. AMS designed the sampling plan, which took into consideration each discharger’s individual requirements based upon wastewater discharge volumes. A series of training videos was produced that guided treatment facility personnel through the correct sample collection procedures to ensure that samples were not contaminated by environmental sources of PFAS. Initially, coolers containing blanked and labeled sample containers were delivered to each treatment facility in preparation for the first sampling event that was coordinated among all facilities. After the first set of samples were collected, AMS visited each facility to retrieve the samples and leave another cooler containing the containers for the next quarter’s sampling effort.

Samples were analyzed by a laboratory with extensive experience in analysis of PFAS compounds with the required level of quality assurance. Specialized electronic data deliveries were developed with the laboratory to satisfy GeoTracker formatting requirements. An account was opened in GeoTracker and AMS uploaded all data and laboratory reports. Many of the participating municipal wastewater dischargers hold multiple discharge permits including for wastewater and recycled water and AMS assisted them with understanding the automated reports they received from GeoTracker.

AMS provided vital assistance to CCLEAN municipal wastewater dischargers by becoming familiar with the requirements of Order WQ 2020-0015-DWQ. A turn-key program was provided to minimize agency staff time that would have been required had each performed their own program and enabled volume discounts from the analytical laboratory. 

Dane Hardin

AMS Contact:
Dane Hardin is a water quality expert with a strong quantitative emphasis. He currently serves as the Executive Director of the Central Coast Long-term Environmental Assessment Network (CCLEAN).