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Organic Chemistry Branch
Note: Moving soon to the Water Sciences Section website.
Norma Good - Acting Branch Chief
The WSS Organic Chemistry Branch is comprised of the Volatile Organics Unit and the Semi-volatile Organics Unit. These analytical units are responsible for analyzing environmental samples (including surface water, groundwater, soil, sediment, chemical spill and fish tissue) for a wide array of pesticides, herbicides, semi-volatile and volatile organic compounds using gas chromatography (GC) and gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) instrumentation. Detection levels are at the parts per billion and parts per trillion levels.
The Organic Chemistry Branch analyzes water samples collected from a variety of sources: creeks, streams, rivers, lakes, monitoring wells, water supply wells, effluent discharges, and Underground Storage Tanks (UST). Water samples are submitted as a part of routine monitoring (Random Ambient Monitoring, Groundwater studies), as well as for compliance monitoring, fish kills, complaints, and emergency situations.
In addition to water samples, the branch analyzes samples of soil, sediment, and fish tissue for organic compounds.
The branch's clients include DWR (Water Sciences Section, Regional offices), the Division of Waste Management's Underground Storage Tank (UST) Section, universities, and federal agencies (USGS, Fish & Wildlife).