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  • 305 West Grand Avenue, Suite 300 Montvale, New Jersey 07645

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    www.anchorqea.com

    I:\Projects\Newtown_Creek\Deliverables\Phase 1 RI Work Plan Addendum\04-Reference Area Memo No. 2\NC_Phase1_RI_WPA_ReferenceArea_Memo_No2_2012-10-01_USEPA.docx

    M E M O R A N D U M To: Caroline Kwan and Nica Klaber

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency – Region 2 Date: October 1, 2012

    From: David Haury and Matt Cavas Anchor QEA, LLC Project: 120782-01.01

    Re: Phase 1 Remedial Investigation Work Plan Addendum: Reference Area Memorandum No. 2

    This memorandum presents the final decision regarding the candidate reference area sampling originally proposed in Section 3 of the Phase 1 Remedial Investigation Work Plan Addendum (WPA; Anchor QEA 2012a) and the subsequent Phase 1Remedial Investigation Work Plan Addendum: Reference Area Memorandum (Reference Area Memorandum; Anchor QEA 2012b).

    CANDIDATE REFERENCE AREAS SELECTED FOR RECONNAISSANCE SAMPLING The areas to be sampled, shown on Figure 1, are generally located throughout Jamaica Bay and along portions of Lower and Upper East River. The 14 candidate reference areas shown were selected by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) on September 27, 2012 (Kwan 2012) after review of proposed candidate reference areas. These 14 areas were selected to provide multiple candidate areas within four general categories—industrial with combined sewer overflows (CSOs), industrial with no or minimal CSO input, non-industrial with CSOs, and non-industrial with no or minimal CSO input. Table 1 lists the 14 candidate reference areas and the general category they were placed in. The target locations within each candidate reference area are shown on Figures 2 through 15 and are listed in Table 2 of this memorandum. The sampling activities to be completed, which are summarized in this memorandum, will be performed in a manner consistent with the methods outlined in the Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study Work Plan (RI/FS Work Plan; AECOM 2011) and described in greater detail in the Field Sampling and Analysis Plan (FSAP; Anchor QEA 2011a). Health and safety measures, standard operating procedures (SOPs), and quality assurance/quality control (QA/QC) protocols will remain

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    unchanged. The similarities in sampling methods will result in data that can be used to compare candidate reference areas and data obtained from the Study Area.

    SAMPLING PROGRAM As described in the WPA (Anchor QEA 2012a) and in the Reference Area Memorandum (Anchor QEA 2012b), the three components of the proposed field sampling program and sample analyses are as follows:

    • Surface Sediment Sampling. Surficial sediment grabs will be collected for analyses of constituents of potential concern (COPCs), total organic carbon (TOC), black (soot) carbon, total solids (TS), and grain size. The sampling methods are detailed in Section 3.2.3.1 of the WPA, including the relevant sections of the FSAP (Anchor QEA 2011a) that apply.

    • Surface Water Column Profiles. Water column profiles will be measured within each defined sampling region in each candidate reference area selected for initial consideration. The following parameters will be measured at each sampling location: temperature, conductivity, salinity, dissolved oxygen (DO), turbidity, pH, and total water depth. Sampling methods are detailed in Section 3.2.3.2 of the WPA, including the relevant sections of the FSAP (Anchor QEA 2011a) that apply.

    • General Field Observations. Field observations will be collected in each of the candidate reference areas selected for initial consideration. These observations will include the following: shoreline type and condition; general flora and fauna sitings; identification and locations of outfalls, seeps, and sheens near the sample areas; observations of areas of wetting/drying and exposed bed; navigational obstructions; access points; recreational use; industrial use; and observation of high tide mark, if visible. Sampling methods are detailed in Section 3.2.3.3 of the WPA.

    Surface Sediment Sampling Sampling and processing of surface sediment samples for chemical and physical testing will follow the methods outlined in Section 4.5 of the RI/FS Work Plan (AECOM 2011) and described in greater detail in Section 7 of the FSAP (Anchor QEA 2011a). Determining sample acceptance will follow protocols identified in previously approved USEPA documents including the RI/FS Work Plan (AECOM 2011), QAPP (Anchor QEA 2011b), and FSAP

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    (Anchor QEA 2011a). Sufficient surface sediment will be collected to meet volume requirements at each sample location, including split samples, if requested by USEPA. If needed, multiple grabs will be collected and homogenized, as stated in the FSAP (Anchor QEA 2011a).

    Water Column Profiling Activities Water column profiling of the reference areas will be performed in a manner consistent with the activities described in the applicable bullets and SOPS in Section 10.2.2 of the FSAP (Anchor QEA 2011a). Those sections detail pre-, during-, and post-profiling activities required in water column profiling of the Study Area.

    Field Observations During surface sediment sampling and other on-water activities, a visual survey will be performed of the shoreline and habitat for each reference area. The survey will assist in determining the suitability of each area as a Study Area reference area. During the surface sediment sampling and other on-water activities, recreational, industrial, and ecological use of the reference area will be documented in photographs and in the field log book. The types of potential recreational activities that the field team staff will look for will include kayaking or other non-commercial watercraft on the water, self-contained underwater breathing apparatus (SCUBA) divers, fishing from on the water or from the shore, and crabbing along the shore. The types of industrial use on the reference area include loading and unloading of barges, moored boats, and boat traffic. In addition, identification and locations of outfalls, seeps, and sheens in the vicinity of the sample locations will be documented. Descriptive attributes recorded for shoreline features may include land use adjacent to the shoreline, presence of bulkheads, dimensions, structural condition, material, flow, odor, and debris. The presence and rough dimensions of intertidal areas will be noted. As part of the preliminary ecological evaluation, the field team staff will make general observations of flora and fauna. Digital photographs of identified shoreline features will be taken and recorded in the attribute record on the electronic data form.

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    Data Processing, Analysis, and Management Collected surface sediments will be processed, as described in this memorandum, and submitted for analysis at project laboratories. The analyte list will be identical to that used for Newtown Creek surface sediment sampling listed under the Chemical-All List in Table 7-2 of the FSAP (Anchor QEA 2011a). Data collection records from the surface sediment sampling activities, including sample collection, processing, and sample management, will be downloaded as possible and saved to the project files. Paper records will be scanned and sent to the Data Management Task Manager. Survey data will be loaded into a geographic information system- (GIS-) based spatial database and added to the Study Area basemap. Analytical data will be validated, as described in the Quality Assurance Project Plan (Anchor QEA 2011b). Analytical data will be maintained in the project database and accessible only by designated project personnel, as described in the Data Management Plan (Anchor QEA 2011c).

    REFERENCES AECOM, 2011. Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study Work Plan, Newtown Creek.

    June 2011.

    Anchor QEA (Anchor QEA, LLC), 2011a. Field Sampling and Analysis Plan. Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study, Newtown Creek. October 2011.

    Anchor QEA, 2011b. Quality Assurance Project Plan. Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study, Newtown Creek. October 2011.

    Anchor QEA, 2011c. Data Management Plan. Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study, Newtown Creek. October 2011.

    Anchor QEA, 2012a. Phase 1 Remedial Investigation Work Plan Addendum. Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study, Newtown Creek. June 2012.

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    Anchor QEA, 2012b. Phase 1 Remedial Investigation Work Plan Addendum: Reference Area Memorandum. Remedial Investigation/Feasibility Study, Newtown Creek. September 2012.

    Kwan, Caroline (USEPA), 2012. Regarding: EPA's final decision on Reference/background sampling locations for Newtown Creek. E-mail to: Dennis Reznick, Day Pitney; Tom Schadt, Anchor QEA, LLC; Eileen Mahoney, New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYCDEP); Angela Licata, NYCDEP; Ian Beilby, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation; and Susan Amron, New York City Law Department. September 27, 2012.

    DH/MPC:rrw

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    LIST OF ATTACHMENTS

    List of Tables

    Table 1 Final Candidate Reference Areas to be Sampled Table 2 Target Sampling