&EPA	Fall 2017
United States
Environmental Protection			.		
FSTRAC's purpose is to build a better relationship with states and tribes to exchange research pri-
orities and results, policy concerns regarding water-related human health risk assessment, and
technical information. FSTRAC is made up of representatives from state and tribal health and environ-
mental agencies and EPA Headquarters and Regional personnel. FSTRAC is an integral part of EPA's
communication strategy with states and tribes. FSTRAC fosters cooperation, consistency, and an under-
standing of EPA's and different states' and tribe's goals and problems in human health risk assessment.
It allows states, tribes and the federal government to work together on issues related to the development
and implementation of regulations and criteria under the Safe Drinking Water Act and Clean Water
Act. Information on FSTRAC can be found on the EPA web page (https://www.epa.gov/water-research/
Recent Webinars
FSTRAC holds several webinars each year to share
information through presentations and discussions
regarding human health risk analysis and water
quality issues.
May 2017 FSTRAC Webinar
EPA held a FSTRAC Webinar in May 2017 during
which the following topics were discussed:
HECD Accomplishments and Workplan for FY 2017 (pre-
sented by Ms. Betsy Behl, EPA/OW): Ms. Behl presented
an overview of EPA OST/HECD's 2017 accomplish-
ments since October 2016 in the areas of aquatic life
(e.g., final technical report on protecting aquatic
life from the effects of hydrologic alteration, plastics
white paper), nutrients (e.g., responding to Ocean
Acidification Petition from the Center for Biological
Diversity), and human health (e.g., Contaminant
Candidate List 4, support for perchlorate peer review
of biologically-based dose response [BBDR] model).
She also described EPA OST/HECD's 2017 priorities,
including developing draft updated aluminum aquatic
life criteria, developing a biosolids screening model,
revising nutrient criteria for lakes and reservoirs for
designated uses, supporting Safe Drinking Water Act
activities (e.g., perchlorate peer review, regulatory
determinations), performing biological condition gra-
dient pilot projects, and developing draft criteria for
coliphage-a viral indicator.
EPA's Human Health Benchmarks for Pesticides in Drinking
Water (presented by Dr. Jamie Strong, EPA/OW): Dr. Strong
presented an overview of EPA's human health bench-
marks for pesticides in drinking water, including
background information, details on how benchmarks
were calculated, and how the Food Quality Protection
Act Safety Factors were applied. Dr. Strong also
provided a description of the overall changes to the
updated human health benchmarks.
The purpose of this newsletter is to keep Federal-State Toxicology and Risk Analysis Committee (FSTRAC)
members up-to-date on current developments in toxicology, risk analysis, and water quality criteria and standards.
This newsletter also provides information on recent FSTRAC webinars and upcoming events. Please share this
newsletter with anyone you think might be interested in these topics. If you are interested in joining FSTRAC,
please contact the FSTRAC Chair, Dr. Shamima Akhter (Akhter.Shamima@epa.gov).

The Fourth Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR
4) (presented by Ms. Melissa Simic, EPA/OW): Ms. Simic
presented information on EPA's Fourth Unregulated
Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR 4), including
a description of the general flow of the Safe Drinking
Water Act regulatory processes, background infor-
mation on the UCMR, UCMR 4 applicability to
public water systems, and a timeline of UCMR 4
implementation. She noted that the contaminants to
be monitored for UCMR 4 would include cyanotox-
ins, haloacetic acids, metals, pesticides, alcohols, and
semivolatile organic chemicals. Ms. Simic presented
information on UCMR 4 sampling frequency, timing,
and locations, as well as reporting data elements for
large and small public water systems.
The Penobscot River and Environmental Contaminants:
Assessment of Tribal Exposure through Sustenance
Lifeways (presented by Ms. Valerie Bataille and
Dr. Richard Sugatt, EPA Region 1): Ms. Bataille and
Dr. Sugatt described the Regionally Applied Research
Effort (RARE) that was designed to assess the poten-
tial level of contaminant exposure and risk faced by
Penobscot Indian Nation Tribal Members who fish,
hunt, trap, and gather according to their cultural
lifeways for sustenance practices. The presenters
explained that this was a preliminary screening to
assess the levels of PCBs, dioxins/furans, mercury
and methylmercury in flora and fauna significant
for maintaining cultural lifeways. This preliminary
risk screening provided the Penobscot Indian Nation
Tribal members with new information regarding the
safe levels of ingestion for snapping turtle and safe
levels of consumption to tribal members who main-
tain sustenance practices according to their cultural
lifeways. The RARE Study also developed visualiza-
tion of the data depicting the risk level for each sample
location by species to assist tribal members when
determining where they should and should not main-
tain their cultural lifeways.
October 2017 FSTRAC Webinar
EPA held a FSTRAC Webinar in October 2017 during
which the following topics were discussed:
OW OST HECD 2017 Accomplishments and Workplan for FY
2018 (presented by Dr. Jamie Strong, EPA/OW): Dr. Strong
presented an overview of EPA OST/HECD's 2017
accomplishments and priorities for 2018 in the areas
of aquatic life criteria, human health criteria, nutri-
ents, biosolids, and biocriteria.
Draft National 304(a) Aluminum Aquatic Life Criteria (pre-
sented by Ms. Diana Eignor, EPA/OW): Ms. Eignor provided
an overview of EPA's draft national 304(a) aluminum
aquatic life criteria, including background information
on sources of aluminum, EPA's current 1988 alumi-
num criteria, and state aluminum standards. She
provided details on the criteria development process,
framework for the updated draft aluminum criteria,
aluminum criteria calculator, and overall status of
aluminum aquatic life criteria development.
Tools to Support Cyanotoxin Recreational Water Quality
Standards/Advisories (presented by Ms. Tracy Bone, EPA/
OW): Ms. Bone provided an overview of tools to
support cyanotoxin recreational water quality stan-
dards and advisories, including EPA's webpages for
Monitoring and Responding to Cyanobacteria and
Cyanotoxins and for Monitoring and Responding to
Cyanotoxins in Recreational "Waters (https://www.epa.
She described additional tools that would be devel-
oped in the future to support cyanotoxin recreational
water quality standards and advisories.
The Application of an Updated Cramer et al. Decision Tree
to Safety Assessment (presented by Dr. Szabina Stice, U.S.
Food and Drug Administration): Dr. Stice provided back-
ground information about the Cramer et al. Decision
Tree (CDT) and Threshold of Toxicological Concern
(TTC). She provided details about the comprehensive
revision of the CDT, called the Expanded Decision
Tree (EDT). Dr. Stice also described the applications
of EDT, including food safety assessment; post-mar-
ket surveillance; safety assessment of impurities in
pharmaceuticals, contaminants in ground water, and
personal care products/cosmetics and their ingredi-
ents; and evaluating the toxicity of mixtures.
FSTRAC Newsletter ~ Fall 2017

Information from States Developing Guidance for Specific Chemicals
Montana Department of Environmental Quality
The Montana Department of Environmental
Quality (DEQ) and British Columbia Ministry of
Environment and Climate Change Strategy (ENV)
are jointly leading an effort to develop a site-specific
selenium criteria/objective for Lake Koocanusa. Lake
Koocanusa is a reservoir in northwestern Montana
and southeastern British Columbia formed by Libby
Dam. Coal mining along the Elk River in British
Columbia is the main source of selenium in the lake.
The two agencies have invited selenium experts to
participate on a technical committee to provide
information and analysis for the development of
a site-specific selenium criteria/objective for the
lake. A model framework has been developed, and
2017 is the third year of water and suspended par-
ticulate collection www.sciencebase.gov/catalog/
item/58ecf623e4b0b4d95d335366. In addition,
selenium concentrations in plankton and fish
have been collected. DEQ and ENV are expected
to begin criteria/objective development within
the next twelve months. For more information on
this work please see the following website: http://
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
Development Support Documents
The Toxicology Division at the Texas Commission
on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) finalized three
Development Support Documents (DSDs) in August
2017: Cobalt and Cobalt Compounds, Decane and
CIO Isomers, and Hexane and C6 Isomers. The TCEQ
also proposed two DSDs for public comment: (1)
Ethylene Dibromide and (2) Manganese and Inorganic
Manganese. Information on these and other projects
currently in progress can be found on the TCEQ's
Toxicology Webpage: https://www.tceq.texas.gov/
Risk Assessment
Drinking Water
Minnesota Department of Health
The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has
recently completed toxicology reviews and derived
health-based water guidance for the following
chemicals: dinoseb, glyphosate and degradate amino-
methylphosphonic acid (AMPA), perfluorooctanoic
acid (PFOA), perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS),
and thiamethoxam. More detailed information can
be found on MDH's Human Health-Based Water
Guidance Table website at: http://www.health.
Chemicals currently under full toxicology review by
MDH include: N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA),
boron, perfluorobutane sulfonate (PFBS), and
MDH has also been working on re-evaluating existing
guidance and updating values where needed. These
re-evaluations are a quick examination of the avail-
able data for a chemical and include an update to the
methodology where applicable, and sometimes trigger
a full toxicology review. Re-evaluation reviews have
been completed for numerous (19) chemicals, and
updated guidance has been issued for (partial list):
alachlor, acetochlor, chloroform, dichlorofluorometh-
ane (DCFM), 1,1,1-trichloroethane, and others. This
guidance is contained in the table hyperlinked above.
Information specific to the re-evaluation process can
be found under the "Updating Guidance" section at:
Minnesota Department of Health
The MDH has finalized its review of PFOS and PFOA.
Since the early 2000s, Minnesota has been grappling
with per- and polyfluoroalkyl substance (PFAS)
contamination of drinking water sources impacting
thousands of residents. Recently, in May 2017, MDH
published updated guidance for PFOS and PFOA.
This guidance leverages EPA's 2016 Health Advisories,
specifically the toxicological review of the database.
FSTRAC Newsletter ~ Fall 2017

To further pinpoint the most sensitive and/or most
highly exposed population, MDH assembled a kinetic
model to study the impact of drinking water/formula
exposures and breastfeeding exposures. Based on
this model, the highest exposure potential (predicted
serum level) was found for infants who breastfeed
from a mother who was chronically exposed. MDH's
website contains further information:
	PFOS: http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/eh/
	PFOA: http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/eh/
More detailed information (review worksheets,
model background document, Excel-based model) is
also available upon request. Contact Helen Goeden
(helen.goeden@state.mn.us) at MDH.
New Jersey Department of Environmental
On November 1, the New Jersey Department of
Environmental Protection announced that it plans to
set Maximum Contaminant Levels (MCLs) for perflu-
orooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorononanoic acid
(PFNA). New Jersey will be the first state to set MCLs
requiring statewide testing of public drinking water
systems for these compounds. An MCL of 13 ng/L for
PFNA was proposed in August 2017, and the public
comment period has ended. A proposal of an MCL of
14 ng/L for PFOA will be forthcoming. A press release
announcing the plans to set these MCLs and provid-
ing additional information about PFOA and PFNA
in New Jersey is found at http://www.nj.gov/dep/
The NJDEP MCLs for PFOA and PFNA are based on
recommendations made by the NJ Drinking Water
Quality Institute (DWQI), an advisory body estab-
lished in the New Jersey Safe Drinking Water Act.
The DWQI considers three factors in developing rec-
ommended MCLs: the Health-based MCL (the health
based goal), the analytical Practical Quantitation
Level (PQL; the level to which the chemical can be
reliably measured by the certified laboratory com-
munity), and the capability of available treatment
removal technology. The MCLs for PFOA and PFNA
are based on the Health-based MCLs since achieve-
ment of the Health-based MCLs is not limited by the
PQLs or treatment removal capability. The documents
providing the basis of the MCLs for PFOA and PFNA
are found on the NJ DWQI website at http://www.
Additionally, the NJ DWQI has developed draft docu-
ments that provide the basis of a recommended MCL
of 13 ng/L for perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS). These
documents are posted for a 60 day public comment
period on the NJ DWQI website at http://www.nj.gov/
Clean Water
EPA Materials for Cyanobacterial Bloom
Management in Recreational Waters
EPA released a suite of materials states and com-
munities can use to protect public health during
harmful algal bloom (HAB) outbreaks caused by
cyanobacteria. Some blooms are capable of pro-
ducing toxins, called cyanotoxins, which can harm
humans and animals, affect drinking water sources
and impact local economies. Public health officials
and outdoor water recreational managers can use
EPA's online resources to develop a cyanotoxin mon-
itoring program, communicate potential health risks
to the public, and address HAB outbreaks. View the
materials at: https://epa.gov/nutrient-policy-data/
March 2016 Coliphage Experts Workshop
EPA has published a peer-reviewed proceedings
document on our March 2016 Coliphage Experts
Workshop. The workshop is part of an ongoing effort
to build the scientific basis for coliphage-based water
quality criteria. The proceedings document outlines
workshop topics and overall findings. Twelve interna-
tionally recognized experts on the science of coliphage
and its usefulness as a viral indicator in recreational
waters participated in the workshop. Experts repre-
sented a spectrum of perspectives from academia,
federal agencies (EPA, CDC, FDA), and the wastewa-
ter industry. The findings were presented publicly at
EPA's 2016 Recreational Waters Conference in New
FSTRAC Newsletter ~ Fall 2017

Orleans. View the document at: https://www.epa.gov/
Algal Indicators in Streams: A Review of their
Application in Water Quality Management of
Nutrient Pollution
EPA has published a summary paper on the applica-
tion of algae as an indicator of nutrient pollution in
streams. This paper describes the use of algal indica-
tors to develop water quality diagnostics for nutrient
pollution in the United States and reviews scientific
developments in the application of algal indicators
across the world. Water quality managers can use this
technical resource to better understand when and how
to utilize algae as indicators of nutrient pollution in
stream ecosystems.
Background. Algae are critical components of stream
ecosystems. They are primary producers of organic
matter, take up nutrients, and serve as a food resource
in streams. In this way, algae supply stream food webs
with energy and mediate a variety of stream chemical
processes. Their population and biomass dynamics
affect the stream food web, and clearly impact the
ability of people to obtain benefits from these systems.
There are a wide variety of methods for sampling,
identifying, and enumerating algae in streams. The
methods are inexpensive, easy to apply, and can be
designed to detect sensitivity to a variety of pollut-
ants, including nutrient pollution. Algae's ecological
relevance, clear links to designated uses, and the
practicality of measuring them make them an import-
ant indicator of nutrient pollution and useful as an
assessment endpoint in the development of numeric
nutrient criteria.
Application of Algal Indicators in the U.S. Despite
their practicality and variety, algal indicators of nutri-
ent pollution  the quantitative measures of algae
that are associated with or correlate to excess nitrogen
and phosphorus  are not widespread. Less than 50
percent of U.S. states appear to evaluate algae regu-
larly. However, those states using algae have applied
them to both the development of nutrient and bioc-
riteria, as well as assessment and stressor diagnosis.
For example, Maine, Montana, and Kentucky have
active monitoring and assessment programs that
focus on stream algae, including incorporating both
algal species composition and biomass measures into
their assessment programs and into nutrient criteria
Algal Indicator Research. From the literature, it
appears algal indicators are more widely employed in
Europe, where they are used to assess water quality,
biological condition, and identify water quality stress-
ors like nutrients and acidity. The European Union
(EU) is ahead of the U.S. not only in applying this
assemblage, but also in working across jurisdictions to
resolve methodological and interpretive differences in
algal assessment information. EU methodologies and
their application are well documented, which should
help the U.S. in developing consistent application.
Where can I find more information? Please con-
tact Brannon Walsh for more information on this
paper: Walsh.Brannon@epa.gov. Access the full
text of the white paper here: https://www.epa.gov/
For additional information on EPA efforts regard-
ing nutrient pollution, visit EPA's Office of Water
Nutrient Pollution website (https://www.epa.gov/
nutrientpollution) which houses updates on nutrient
pollution research, reports, and technical resources.
Water Reuse Studies in Minnesota
MDH is partnering with the University of Minnesota
to complete two studies on microbial occurrence
in non-potable water reuse systems. The first study,
which focused on a rainwater system for flushing
toilets and a stormwater system for irrigating fields
in a park has been completed. We expect to have an
overview of results available from our website within
the next couple of months. A second study, which will
involve collecting samples from several different types
of systems in Minnesota, is just starting. We hope to
have that study completed in a couple of years.
In addition, MDH is working with other agencies and
stakeholders to make recommendations for regulatory
and nonregulatory approaches to water reuse. A final
report will be available in late 2017 or early 2018.
FSTRAC Newsletter ~ Fall 2017

Treatability Issues for Contaminants
EPA Region 10's Assessment of Carbon
Amendments to Reduce Impacts of Tailings from
an Abandoned Mercury Mine
Cinnabar mine is an abandoned mercury (Hg) mine
which operated from 1921 to 1958 and is located in
central Idaho. Cinnabar Creek flows through the tail-
ings at the mine site and delivers water with elevated
Hg concentrations into the East Fork of the South
Fork of the Salmon River. The majority of the Hg load
to the river occurs as particulate-bound Hg during
periods of elevated discharge in the spring snow-melt
period. Limited road access to the mine site precludes
traditional heavy equipment removal options. As a
result, alternative remediation strategies are being
considered that involve the addition of organic mate-
rial to the tailings pile to promote vegetation growth
and decrease erosion. While this action could reduce
the bulk loading of Hg to Cinnabar Creek, it also has
the potential to increase methylmercury (MeHg) pro-
duction at the site through methylation by anaerobic
bacteria. MeHg is more toxic and the form that can
bioaccumulate in fish downstream of the site. Selected
remediation of the site aims to reduce Hg loading to
the creek and at the same time not increase down-
stream MeHg concentrations.
The Region 10 Laboratory, Office of Environmental
Review and Assessment (OERA)-Environmental
Services Unit and Office of Environmental Clean-up
conducted a study that focused on addressing poten-
tial increases in MeHg production at the Cinnabar
mine site as a function of organic matter amend-
ments. The study was designed to help site managers
make effective decisions regarding site removal and
remediation options focused on reducing water
concentrations of total-Hg and not increasing con-
centrations of MeHg. The controlled laboratory
experiments involved a paired experimental design
involving six mesocosms of tailings material which
assessed the impact of Hg mobility and MeHg forma-
tion from tailings with organic material amendments
and those left un-amended. The experimental results
showed that if the mesocosm tailings are allowed to
go anoxic, the organic carbon amendments can result
in an increase in the MeHg and total-Hg concentra-
tions in porewater. However, if the tailings do not
become saturated and are oxic, the increase in MeHg
production as a result of carbon amendments would
be greatly reduced. These results are currently being
used by site managers to design effective remediation
options at the site that are optimized to reduce MeHg
production and decrease Hg mobility to downstream
Dr. Chris Eckley (EPA Region 10), prepared the above
description. For additional information, please con-
tact Mr. Julius Nwosu (nwosu.julius@epa.gov) of EPA
Region 10.
Publications Pertinent to Drinking Water Issues
Mudumbi, J.B.N., S.K.O. Ntwampe, T. Matsha,
L. Mekuto, and E.F. Itoba-Tombo. 2017. Recent
developments in polyfluoroalkyl compounds
research: a focus on human/environmental
health impact, suggested substitutes and removal
strategies. Environ Monit Assess. 189(8):402. doi:
10.1007/sl0661-017-6084-2. Epub 2017 Jul 18.
Review. PubMed PMID: 28721589.
Bartell, S.M. 2017. Online serum PFOA calculator for
adults. Environ Health Perspect. 125(10):104502. doi:
10.1289/EHP2820. PubMed PMID: 29068316.
FSTRAC Newsletter ~ Fall 2017

Upcoming Events and Conferences
Upcoming FSTRAC Webinar
The next FSTRAC Webinar is tentatively scheduled
for winter 2018. Additional details, including the date
of the next FSTRAC Webinar, will be provided to
FSTRAC members in the coming weeks.
SRA 2017 Annual Meeting - Society for
Risk Analysis
SRA will be holding its annual meeting on December
10-14, 2017, in Arlington, Virginia. Additional infor-
mation is available on the SRA website: http://sra.
org/2017- annual-meeting
SOT Annual Meeting - Society of
SOT will be holding its 57th annual meeting on
March 11-15, 2018, in San Antonio, Texas. Additional
information about the March 2018 meeting is
provided on the SOT website: http://www.toxicology.
ASM Microbe 2018 - American Society for
ASM will be holding its annual meeting on June
7-11, 2018, in the Georgia World Congress Center, in
Atlanta, Georgia. Additional information is available
on the SRA website: https://www.asm.org/index.php/
SETAC North America Annual Meeting -
Society of Environmental Toxicology and
SETAC will be holding its 39th annual North America
meeting on November 4-8, 2018, in Sacramento,
California. Additional information is provided on the
SETAC Events website: https://www.setac.org/events/
FSTRAC Newsletter ~ Fall 2017