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Second Round of Sampling for PCBs in Two Buildings at Bannister Federal Complex Reveals No Indoor Air Health Concerns

Release Date: 06/24/2010
Contact Information: David Bryan, 913-551-7433,

Environmental News


(Kansas City, Kan., June 24, 2010) - Results from March air sampling at a child care center and an adjacent building at the Bannister Federal Complex in Kansas City do not reveal health concerns at the facilities related to polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), EPA Region 7 officials announced today. The results include tests for 209 different forms of PCBs in indoor air samples and from air samples taken from beneath the concrete floor slabs of Buildings 50 and 52.

EPA Region 7 and its contractors performed a series of sampling activities March 26-28 at the two buildings, which are part of the General Services Administration's managed portion of the complex. Building 50 houses GSA's Kansas City South Field Office, and Building 52 houses the Bannister Complex Child Development Center, a child care facility. The sampling was conducted as part of an ongoing environmental evaluation of the buildings.

EPA’s protocol for investigating suspected vapor intrusion calls for the collection of samples over an extended period of time and under different climatic conditions.

“The scientific data from these latest samplings continue to indicate no health concerns at these two buildings related to PCBs,” said Karl Brooks, regional administrator. “However, we will continue to work with other agencies at the Bannister Federal Complex to gather more data so that we will be protective of human health.”

EPA released the results of recent sampling for volatile organic compounds on June 9. Analysis of data from sampling for PCBs took more time because of the greater numbers of PCBs analyzed and the analytical procedures involved.

EPA expects to conduct groundwater sampling, soil gas sampling, and soil sampling around the two buildings in late June and July as part of an agreement between EPA and GSA. Additionally, two more rounds of air testing will be conducted before the end of the year as part of a comprehensive testing plan at these buildings.

PCBs belong to a broad family of man-made organic chemicals known as chlorinated hydrocarbons. PCBs were domestically manufactured from 1929 until their manufacture was banned in 1979. PCBs were used in hundreds of industrial and commercial applications, including electrical, heat transfer and hydraulic equipment; as plasticizers in paints, plastics and rubber products; in pigments, dyes, and carbonless copy paper; and many other industrial applications.

A summary of the air sampling results is available at

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