About EPA

About Region 6’s Environmental Services Branch Laboratory

What We Do

The ESB Laboratory provides quality assured analytical support using state-of-the-art techniques and methodology for organic, inorganic, and biological analyses. The lab also performs technical audits of environmental monitoring laboratories and public water supply laboratories.  The lab:

  • manages Region 6's Contract Laboratory Program, performing sample scheduling, sample routing, data verification, data validation and data usability;
  • provides technical expertise to the Region, as well as to federal, state, tribal and local entities;
  • coordinates technical assistance, including performing analytical methods and procedures; and
  • provides expert witness support for both civil and criminal enforcement cases.

Accreditation: The laboratory is accredited by the National Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Program Exit to perform analysis of contaminants in air, drinking water, non-potable water, solid and chemical materials.

Organization

Rick McMillin, Acting Director

The ESB Lab includes:

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Laboratory Analysis Section

What We Do:   The Laboratory Analysis Section is comprised of two teams, the Organic Chemical Analysis (Organic Team), and the Inorganic Chemical Analysis (Inorganic Team ). 

The Organic Laboratory Team analyzes samples of water, soils, and oils for pesticides, herbicides, polychlorinated biphenols (PCBs), and semi-volatile compounds. These samples come from a variety of places such as wells that provide drinking water to the public, waste treatment plants, chemical plants, landfills, or abandoned sites where hazardous waste has been disposed. The organic laboratory consists of an extraction laboratory, a pesticide/PCB laboratory, a volatile laboratory, and a semi-volatile laboratory.

The Inorganic Laboratory Team analyzes environmental samples for trace metals, mercury, and RCRA characteristics. The samples analyzed may include drinking water, waste treatment water, solid wastes, surface and ambient waters, and sediment/soils. These tests support all programs i.e. air, water RCRA, Superfund, and criminal investigation.

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Laboratory Support and External Laboratory Oversight Section

What We Do:   The Laboratory Support and External Laboratory Oversight Section performs technical oversight of the Regional Environmental Services Assistance Team (ESAT) and the Superfund Analytical Services / Contract Laboratory Program (CLP) contracts. The section oversees contractor data verification and validation activities, performs CLP sample scheduling, and determines contractor generated technical data usability for client programs. The section is responsible for CLP Regional Sample Control Center (RSCC) activities and the Regional ESAT Project Officer and the CLP Regional Project Officer are members of this section. Duties also include representing Region 6 in the National Environmental Laboratory Accreditation Program (NELAP) and oversight for the Region’s NELAP activities.

In addition, the section coordinates the Drinking Water Certification Program, which includes auditing the States Primary Drinking Water Laboratory and evaluating the States Drinking Water Certification Program. The Laboratory Support and External Laboratory Oversight Section serves as the regional point of contact for laboratory related technical assistance inquiries. The Laboratory Support and External Laboratory Oversight Section is under the supervision of the Associate Branch Chief.

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