Environmental Contamination: Department of Defense Activities Related to Trichloroethylene, Perchlorate, and Other Emerging Contaminants

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Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "DOD defines emerging contaminants as chemicals or materials with (1) perceived or real threat to health or the environment and (2) lack of published standards or a standard that is evolving or being reevaluated. Two emerging contaminants--trichloroethylene (TCE) and perchlorate--are of particular concern to DOD because they have significant potential to impact people or DOD's mission. TCE, a degreasing agent in metal cleaning which has been used widely in DOD industrial and maintenance processes, has been documented at low exposure levels to cause headaches and difficulty concentrating. High-level ... continued below

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United States. Government Accountability Office. July 12, 2007.

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Testimony issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "DOD defines emerging contaminants as chemicals or materials with (1) perceived or real threat to health or the environment and (2) lack of published standards or a standard that is evolving or being reevaluated. Two emerging contaminants--trichloroethylene (TCE) and perchlorate--are of particular concern to DOD because they have significant potential to impact people or DOD's mission. TCE, a degreasing agent in metal cleaning which has been used widely in DOD industrial and maintenance processes, has been documented at low exposure levels to cause headaches and difficulty concentrating. High-level exposure may cause dizziness, headaches, nausea, unconsciousness, cancer, and possibly death. Similarly, perchlorate has been used by DOD, NASA, and others in making, testing, and firing missiles and rockets. It has been widely found in groundwater, surface water, and soil across the United States, Perchlorate health studies have documented particular risks to fetuses of pregnant women. GAO was asked for testimony to summarize its past work on perchlorate-, TCE-, and defense-activities related to (1) the state of knowledge about the emerging contaminants TCE and perchlorate, (2) DOD responsibilities for managing TCE and perchlorate contamination at its facilities, and (3) DOD activities to address TCE and perchlorate contamination."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • July 12, 2007

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  • June 11, 2014, 5:03 a.m.

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United States. Government Accountability Office. Environmental Contamination: Department of Defense Activities Related to Trichloroethylene, Perchlorate, and Other Emerging Contaminants, text, July 12, 2007; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc290648/: accessed December 11, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.