LQM is a specialist environmental consultancy based in Nottingham (UK) with an international reputation for assessing and managing the risks posed to human health and the environment by contaminants in soil. Increasingly this is being done within a context of sustainable development and specifically sustainable brownfield regeneration.

We provide consultancy, peer review and expert witness services, contract research and training courses on all aspects of the management of land contamination to problem holders, developers and local government.

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Archive: Aug 2015

  1. Update: LQM PAH Toolkit

    The LQM PAH Toolkit consists of two Excel spreadsheet tools designed to assist problem holders, regulators and consultants in assessing the potential human health risks posed by polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) at land contamination sites.  The two tools are available for purchase separately from our website (www.lqm.co.uk); free trial versions with limited functionality are also available.

    The PAH Profiling Tool was  launched on the 22nd June 2015.  This tool allows large datasets (upto 499 samples) to be quickly screened to determine if the PAH profile of each sample satisfies the tests underlying the use of the Surrogate Marker Approach (SMA).  The SMA is one of the two principle methods used internationally for the assessment of PAH mixtures in soil, water and food etc.  Where the use of the SMA is valid, the risk from all PAHs in the mixture can be assessed based solely on the concentration of benzo[a]pyrene (BaP) in soil samples.  At least two generic assessment criteria that rely on the SMA approach have been derived; the C4SL for benzo[a]pyrene and the S4UL for coal tar (BaP as a surrogate marker).   Both these values should only be used where the PAH profile of the soil data satisfies the SMA tests.  A recording of an hour- long free  webinar outlining the basis and use of this tool is available here.

    The PAH Double Ratio Tool was launched on the 17th July 2015.  This related tool allows the potential source(s) of PAH mixtures to be interrogated – quickly and easily highlighting samples likely to be from similar sources and those that diverge significantly from such a source profile. As the source of PAH contamination can have a significant impact on the nature and magnitude of the risks posed, it is important that risk assessors consider, and attempt to identify, the PAH source(s) at all sites where they are identified.  A recording of an hour- long free  webinar outlining the basis and use of this tool is available here.

    Since their launch there has been widespread interest from consultants of all sizes and backgrounds.  Following some initial compatibility issues involving older versions of Excel, the currently available versions are now believed to be completely backwardly compatible.

    We have seen strong sales of both tools,there have also been more than 80 downloads of the trial versions and feedback on the tools and webinars continues to be very positive and encouraging:

    • “It will save a lot of time”
    • “Excellent value for money what a time saver”
    • “The molecular indices …. are useful to provide additional reassurance”; and
    • “Looks like it will be a really useful assessment tool”

    To find out more – please follow the links above or go to our website as www.lqm.co.uk.