Chloroform Testing in Pittman Neighborhood (Henderson)
NDEP hosted a Virtual Community Information Meeting on December 9, 2021 from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. to discuss the next steps for the indoor air testing project.
Indoor air from homes within the Pittman neighborhood will be sampled in March 2022 to confirm that chloroform vapor levels are consistent with previous test results.
As part of its mission to protect public health and the environment, the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection (NDEP) regulates hundreds of businesses, facilities, and other operations across Nevada – including the Black Mountain Industrial (BMI) Complex in Henderson – to ensure compliance with all State and federal environmental protection standards, including those established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
With respect to the BMI Complex, NDEP continues to enforce the State’s robust environmental protection regulations, as well as recommendations from EPA. Due to past industrial operations, there are chemicals present in the groundwater and soil beneath the BMI Complex. As such, facilities at the site conduct annual groundwater testing to ensure nearby neighborhoods are not impacted. One of the chemicals monitored at the BMI Complex is chloroform, commonly a by-product of chlorine treatment in drinking water and swimming pools. If inhaled or consumed on a regular basis at high enough levels, chloroform may cause adverse health effects.
Recent Environmental Assessments and Next Steps
In September 2020, EPA recommended indoor air quality testing in areas where chloroform levels may be elevated. Following these recommendations, NDEP directed the Nevada Environmental Response Trust (NERT) to conduct a series of environmental analyses, scientific modeling, and human health risk assessments to test for and evaluate the extent of chloroform in and around the BMI Complex.
Fortunately, based on hundreds of samples collected over five years, the tests found NO health concerns for chloroform in the surrounding communities, and the likelihood of elevated chloroform levels in nearby homes remains low. Additionally, chloroform concentrations have been decreasing throughout the area due to groundwater treatment and natural processes.
Nevertheless, out of an abundance of caution and in line with recommendations from EPA, NDEP has directed NERT to evaluate several homes in the East Pittman neighborhood to confirm that chloroform vapor levels are consistent with test results, and determine whether any action is needed to support the health and wellbeing of nearby residents. NDEP will focus on homes outlined in blue in the map below. The testing is planned for March 2022, and results will be provided to all area residents and posted on this webpage.
As part of our mission, NDEP is committed to keeping community members informed every step of the way throughout the air investigation project. Regular updates on upcoming community workshops, news, and other developments will be posted on this webpage as they become available.
For more information, please contact James Dotchin at jdotchin [at] ndep.nv.gov or 702-668-3914.
For more information on next steps regarding the indoor air sampling, please click the links below.