Home » Optional short courses » Environmental Forensics (#183)

Environmental Forensics (#183)

May 8-9, 2014

Instructors: Alan Jeffrey, Ph.D., Robert Morrison, Ph.D., and Brian L. Murphy, Ph.D.

CEUs: 1.475

​This two-day course introduces you to the world of environmental forensics, a multidisciplinary field with the goal of understanding how and when contamination occurred. Investigations may involve identifying and apportioning responsibility among multiple parties, age dating releases, or determining exactly how a release occurred with reference to insurance or other contractual issues. Among the most important disciplines for an environmental forensics investigation are often chemistry and hydrogeology.

Ample time will be allocated for group discussion, particularly of problems you bring to the course and of issues at the frontiers of environmental forensics.

Learning objectives

In this course, you will learn about:

  • Cross-discipline investigation methods
  • Current contaminant-specific tools for the most common contaminants in groundwater
  • Experiences in sharing methods.

Who should attend?

  • ​Consulting engineers and hydrogeologists
  • Potentially responsible parties (commonly referred to as PRPs)
  • Regulators
  • Attorneys whose practice includes environmental litigation
  • University researchers
  • Graduate students.​​​

* Prerequisites

Knowledge of organic chemistry and mathematics through calculus is assumed. This course will be most useful for individuals with some exposure to environmental forensics concepts.

Day 1​

7:00 a.m. ​Registration
7:30 a.m. Instructors and class introductions
7:45 a.m. ​Forensic methods for chlorinated solvents
9:15 a.m. ​Break
​9:30 a.m. ​Discussion: What you can learn from PCE/TCE daughter products
​10:45 a.m. ​Break
​11:00 a.m. ​Forensic methods for petroleum hydrocarbons: Crude oil and MGP fingerprinting
12:30 p.m. ​Lunch (on your own)
​1:30 p.m. ​Forensic methods for petroleum hydrocarbons: Refined products
​2:45 p.m. Break
​3:00 p.m. Overview of compound-specific isotope techniques
​4:15 p.m. ​Break
​4:30 p.m. ​Discussion: Other uses of isotopic analysis in forensic studies
​5:30 p.m. ​Course adjourns for the day

​Day 2

​8:00 a.m. Forensic methods for PAHs, PCBs, dioxins, and furans
​9:15 a.m. ​Break
9:30 a.m. Other age-dating methods
​10:30 a.m. ​Break
​10:45 a.m. ​Storage tank mass balance calculations
​11:15 a.m. ​Age-dating methods for USTs
​12:00 p.m. Lunch (on your own)
1:00 p.m. Forensic methods for metals
​1:30 p.m. ​Discussion: Age dating based on contaminant plume length
​2:15 p.m. ​Break
​2:30 p.m. ​Use of statistical analysis methods in forensic investigations
​3:45 p.m. ​Break
​4:00 p.m. ​Class exercise/open mic
5:00 p.m. ​Course adjourns
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