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Glossary of Terms

Administrative Record: The body of documents that forms the basis for selection of a particular response at a site.

Baseline Risk Assessment (BLRA): A study of the actual or potential danger to human health or the environment from hazardous substances at a specific site. The study includes a human health and an ecological risk component. The BLRA estimates risks at the site as it currently exists, with no remedial action taken.

Contaminants of Concern (COCs): A subset of all the chemicals detected at the site that represent those contaminants posing the greatest potential human health risks at the site due to their inherent toxicity or prevalence at the site.

Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA): CERCLA is also referred to as “Superfund.” A federal law that addresses the discharge and remediation of hazardous substances, pollutants, and contaminants into the environment. It provides for a structured remedial system, makes any entity that had a role in the contamination liable for the cleanup, arranges for the funding of abandoned sites, and authorizes the National Contingency Plan (NCP).

Defense Environmental Restoration Program (DERP): A program established to design and implement cleanups at sites historically used by the United States government for military activities.

Ecological Risk Assessment: The portion of a BLRA that addresses risks to ecological receptors.

Engineering Evaluation/Cost Analysis (EE/CA): A document used to identify the objectives of the removal action and analyze the effectiveness, implementability, and cost of various alternatives, it also documents the recommended action and describe reasons for the recommendation. The NCP requires an EE/CA for all non-time critical removal actions.

Feasibility Study (FS): A comprehensive evaluation of potential alternatives for remediating contamination. The FS identifies general response actions, screens potentially applicable technologies and process options, assembles alternatives, and evaluates detailed alternatives.

Formerly Used Defense Sites (FUDS): The FUDS program manages environmental cleanup on eligible properties formerly owned, leased, possessed, or used by DoD. The FUDS program only applies to properties that transferred from DoD before 1986.

Groundwater: Water found beneath the ground surface that fills pores between materials such as sand, silt, gravel, or rock which is often used as a source of drinking water via municipal or domestic wells.

Landfill: A disposal facility where waste is placed in or on land.

Metals: Chemical elements such as iron and aluminum generally characterized by ductility, malleability, luster, and conductivity of heat and electricity. Metals naturally exist in soils.

National Oil and Hazardous Substance Pollution Contingency Plan (NCP): The federal regulations specifying the methods and criteria for cleaning up Superfund sites.

National Priorities List (NPL): EPA’s list of national priorities among the known releases or threatened releases of hazardous substances, pollutants, or contaminants throughout the United States and its territories. The NPL is intended primarily to guide EPA in determining which sites warrant further investigation.

Operable Unit (OU): A term which refers to a portion of a Superfund site where action is undertaken in incremental steps to remedy risks to human health or the environment.

Ordnance: Military supplies, including weapons, ammunition, combat vehicles, maintenance tools, and equipment. The ordnance assembled at the site were explosive devices such as bombs.

Research Department Explosive; hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitro-1,3,5-triazine (RDX): RDX is a hard, white crystalline solid, insoluble in water and only slightly soluble in some other solvents and widely used in military and industrial applications. RDX may be toxic to humans when inhaled, ingested or through skin contact.

Record of Decision (ROD): The decision document in which USACE or EPA selects a remedy for a Superfund site.

Remedial: An adjective describing the course of study combined with actions to correct site contamination problems through identifying the nature and extent of cleanup strategies under the Superfund program.

Remedial Investigation (RI): The first part of a two-part study which determines how much and what kind of contamination exists at a site. A RI generally involves collecting and analyzing samples of groundwater, surface water, soil, sediment, and air. The second part of the study is a FS (see above).

Responsiveness Summary: A portion of the ROD in which public comments are summarized and responses to comments are made. The responsiveness summary addresses public comments on the Proposed Plan and other documents.

Soil Gas: Gas occurring in the unsaturated soil pore spaces.

Superfund: The common name given to CERCLA (see above).

Surface Soil: Soil samples taken from the top 0.5 feet of soil from the ground surface.

Trichloroethene (TCE): A stable, colorless liquid with a low boiling point. TCE has many industrial applications, including use as a solvent and as a metal degreasing agent. TCE may be toxic to humans when inhaled, ingested or through skin contact and can damage vital organs, especially the liver (see also Volatile Organic Compounds).

Vapor Intrusion: The migration of volatile chemicals from contaminated groundwater or soil into an overlying building.

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs): A group of organic compounds that have a tendency to change from liquids to gases at ambient temperatures and pressures.

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Acronyms and Abbreviations

amsl  above mean sea level
AOP Advanced Oxidation Process
ARDC  Agricultural Research and Development Center
bgs  below ground surface 
BLRA  Baseline Risk Assessment 
CENWK  U. S. Army Corps of Engineers, Kansas City District 
CERCLA Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act 
CFR  Code of Federal Regulations 
COC  contaminant of concern 
DERP  Defense Environmental Restoration Program 
DNT  2,4 or 2,6-Dinitrotoluene 
DoD Department of Defense 
EE/CA Engineering Evaluation/Cost Analysis 
EPA U.S. Environmental Protection Agency 
EW Extraction Well
°F degrees Fahrenheit
FEW Focused Extraction Well
FOIA Freedom of Information Act
FS Feasibility Study
FUDS Formerly Used Defense Sites
GCW  Groundwater Circulation Well
GMP Groundwater Monitoring Program
GW  Groundwater
IAG  Interagency Agreement
IDW  investigation derived waste
LL  Load Line
MCL  Maximum Contaminant Level
mg/kg milligrams per kilogram
MMRP  Military Munitions Response Program
MNA Monitored Natural Attenuation
M.U.D.  Metropolitan Utilities District
NCP  National Contingency Plan
NDEQ  Nebraska Department of Environmental Quality
NFA  No Further Action
NPL  National Priorities List
NRD  Natural Resources District
NOP  Nebraska Ordnance Plant
OE  Ordnance and Explosives
O&M  Operations and Maintenance
OSHA  Occupational Safety and Health Administration
OU  Operable Unit
PA  Preliminary Assessment
ppb  part per billion
PPE  Personal Protective Equipment
PM  Project Manager
QCSR  Quality Control Summary Report
QSR  Quarterly Summary Report
RACR  Removal Action Completion Report
RAO  Remedial Action Objective
RDX  Research Department Explosive; hexahydro-1,3,5-trinitro-1,3,5-triazine 
RI  Remedial Investigation
ROD  Record of Decision
SW  surface water
TCE  Trichloroethene
TNB  1,3,5-Trinitrobenzene
TNT  2,4,6-Tribitrotoluene
UNL University of Nebraska – Lincoln
USACE  U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
USGS  U.S. Geological Survey
VI  vapor intrusion 
VFW  Veterans of Foreign War
VOC  volatile organic compound
WSW  Water Supply Well
 µg/L micrograms per liter