TCEQ must test benchmark for VOCs is 140 times Metroplex average. VOCs can contain many toxic chemicals including benzene.
Tony Walker, TCEQ Regional Administrator said I was wrong when I explained at the Denton Town Hall that we could be breathing benzene and other dangerous toxins at 140 times the Metroplex average before TCEQ must test using a Summa canister. I like to get it right so I submitted a Texas Public Information Request and today I received the answer.
the 5.0 ppmv level was used to draw the line on whether a canister samples should be collected.
You can read the entire explanation HERE. It’s important to note that TCEQ can test if the VOCs are lower than the benchmark.
“…..nothing precludes the investigator from obtaining a summa canister sample if, in his or her judgement, the situation warrants.”
It works just like I stated previously:
TCEQ takes their TVA monitoring device to measure the VOCs in the air. Much like an IR video camera, a TVA cannot tell you what specific VOCs are in the air. It only measures total chemicals and it is a fairly imprecise instrument. If VOCs are detected at 5000 ppb then the TCEQ MUST test.
The average amount of VOCs is 35 ppb.
142 rounds down to 140 times the average amount for the Metroplex.