Technical Integrity / Collaboration / Exceptional Results

Emerging Contaminants

A wide-ranging group of chemicals generally referred to as “emerging contaminants” (ECs) increasingly have been found in waterways and water systems. They include pharmaceuticals, chemicals in personal and consumer products, and industrial and agricultural chemicals. In many cases, the risk to human health and the environment from these chemicals is not clear, and standards and guidance applied by regulators may vary based on different interpretations of toxicity information. Tracking and navigating regulations and requirements for ECs can be challenging. Integral scientists have extensive experience monitoring international, federal, state, and local regulatory activities related to ECs. We help our clients develop effective risk management strategies to mitigate the impacts from ECs on their businesses, while remaining compliant with dynamic requirements and being good environmental and public health stewards.

Learn more about Integral’s EC experience.

Integral’s Report on State-specific EC Activity

Integral has independently developed a state-by-state compendium based on a comprehensive analysis of activity on ECs in each state. Compiled through standardized research methods and one-on-one interviews with state regulatory representatives, this report provides a thorough and systematic evaluation of state regulatory initiatives related to emerging contaminants.

EC Map

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Chemical-specific EC Expertise

Examples of ECs for which we have recent and extensive experience include per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs), 1,2,3-trichloropropane (TCP), metals such as lead and arsenic, pesticides, and 1,4-dioxane.

FirePFAS Assessment and Management

Integral staff are on the forefront of technical and regulatory developments for PFASs. Our services include multimedia environmental sampling, field sampling programs, toxicity evaluations, treatment system design and engineering, and stakeholder communication.

Regulatory NegotiationStrategic Guidance

Integral works with clients to design and implement strategies that reflect the latest technical knowledge and regulatory contexts. Our staff contribute to state-of-the-science approaches and research, participate on advisory boards, and lead workshops on topics involving ECs. We advise clients on ways to assess and minimize potential liabilities and offer insight on methods to conduct and streamline evaluations.

Human Health and Ecological Risk AssessmentToxicity Evaluations and Risk Assessment

We have unique experience assessing human exposure to ECs, including design and data analysis of human serum biomonitoring studies and assessing site-specific exposure compared to national baseline levels. One of our key staff formerly led the U.S. Air Force Emerging Issues/Contaminants Program, and others are nationally known for their work on changes in toxicity standards and regulations.


Integral has performed treatment technology evaluations for 1,4-dioxane, PFASs, 1,2,3-TCP, and other ECs. We are experienced in the evaluation of technology effectiveness, implementability, and cost. Our engineers have completed numerous remediation system designs, including those for potable water treatment systems.

Fate and Transport

Integral has evaluated fate and transport of PFASs, sulfolane, 1,4-dioxane, 1,2,3-TCP, and other ECs to support litigation, assessment of human health risk issues, remedial investigations, and design of site-specific risk management and remediation strategies. Central to Integral’s approach is development of an accurate conceptual site model (CSM) using multiple lines of evidence. The CSM describes the interplay of physical, chemical, and biological processes governing contaminant fate and transport, as well as relevant toxicity and risk assumptions. Our approach allows us to negotiate remedies and risk mitigation plans based on defensible science.