[Greenbuilding] Waivers of Prosecution for Violating Radionuclides Rule

Carmine Vasile gfx-ch at msn.com
Thu Sep 6 14:38:09 PDT 2012

Gennaro: I just learned about Radionuclides Rule waivers in NYS from yesterday's mails below. You and other NYS Forum members should be concerned about this; especially those opposed to bottled water. 
Yours truly,Dr. Carmine F. Vasilegfxtechnology.com

----- Original Message ----- 

From: Michael Lowy 

To: darcsand at verizon.net

Sent: Wednesday, September 05, 2012 2:58

Subject: rad questions


In response
to your questions on rads in drinking water in the Levittown LI area, as
indicated, I am forwarding to you two responses that I had provided to similar
concerns from another constituent last week on the same matter. 

As I hoped I had explained
satisfactorily, for any wavier information, (i.e., what waivers for which
contaminants specific water suppliers have in Nassau County) you would need to
contact the local health unit, in your case Nassau County HD, which implements
the drinking water program in your county.  As I mentioned, implementation
of the drinking water program is delegated from NYSDOH to the local health departments. 


my water authority isn't testing for uranium 

For uranium, it may be that the water system has a waiver in place, i.e., an
allowance for reduced monitoring, such that the system only has to monitor for
uranium once every 6 or 9 years, depending on the initial monitoring result
averages.  Typically, the initial monitoring would have been 4 consecutive
quarters for uranium, gross alpha, and radium 226/228, and depending on those
results, the system may have been eligible for a reduction in the frequency of
monitoring.  The other possibility is that instead of monitoring for
uranium, a system, in certain cases (dependant on gross alpha being less than a
certain amount, and error factors), may be allowed to monitor instead for gross
alpha particle activity.   

and it also appears that with regard to beta and photon, the measurement they
are using is picocuries instead of milirems. 

As you indicate, the standard for betas and photons is measured in mrem//yr,
which is a dose of energy to the body.  EPA regulates 179 betas and
photons, each of which has its own concentration of radiation which is measured
in pCi/L, and which produces the standard of 4 mrem/year dose.  Note that
each nuclide has a different concentration (again, measured in pCi/L) that produces
a 4 mrem/year dose due to the different energy levels of the specific betas and
photons.  What essentially occurs after laboratory measurement of
beta/photon concentration is a conversion that results in mrem/year, adding up
all the fractions of whatever betas/photons are found and then compared to the
standard of 4 mrem/year.  So for instance, the concentration of a
particular rad is determined, divided by the pCi/L equivalent from mrem/year
exposure (which is found in a table that EPA and the State use), and that would
be one of the beta/photon fractions, once all fractions are added, the result,
if greater than 1 would indicate an exceedence. 

This is our general drinking water rads website page: 


The 4 tabs on top of the website page should answer most of your questions, but
if not, let me know. 


Michael J. Lowy, Environmental Scientist

Drinking Water Ground Water Protection Section

USEPA Region 2

290 Broadway, 24th Floor

New York, NY 10007-1866

(phone) 212.637.3830 (fax) 212.637.3887  		 	   		   		 	   		   		 	   		   		 	   		   		 	   		   		 	   		   		 	   		  
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