Areawide Soil Contamination Project
Toolbox Chapter 6
Types of protection measures to reduce potential exposure to arsenic and
lead in soil include:
- Education programs
refer to broad-based, community-wide efforts to inform individuals and
businesses of the presence of contamination and changes in behavior that can
be taken to limit or reduce exposure to the contamination.
Such programs use a wide range of techniques to distribute information and increase public
- Public health programs
generally involve activities designed to identify and focus protection measures
on specific populations within a community considered to be at high risk. They
often include health monitoring activities (e.g., blood lead testing or urinary
arsenic screening), one-on-one education on steps to reduce exposure, and
intervention activities to address sources contributing to elevated exposures.
- Individual protection measures
are simple, day-to-day things that individuals can do to limit or reduce
exposure to soil contaminants. Examples include hand washing, removing shoes
before entering homes, using gloves while gardening, scrubbing fruits and
vegetables before eating them, wet mopping to clean surfaces indoors, bathing
pets, and washing toddler toys.
- Land-use controls
are actions by government or private agreements that provide information on the
presence of contamination on a property and/or that limit or prohibit activities
that could result in exposure to contaminants or harm to a physical barrier on
the property. Examples include zoning, permits and licenses, covenants,
easements, deed and plat notices, and real-estate disclosure.
- Physical barriers
prevent or limit exposure to contaminated soil or unauthorized access to a
property. They may be used in combination with excavation to consolidate
contaminated soil on a particular part of a property. Examples include fences,
grass cover, wood chips, clean soil cover, and pavement.
- Contamination reduction
involves reducing the concentration of contaminants in soil or removing the
contamination for disposal at another location or in a contained area on a
property. Examples include soil blending or tilling, soil removal and
replacement, and phytoremediation.