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Environmental Surveillance

CDC has reviewed the results of EPA’s sampling efforts in response to the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. In our review, CDC has used information on the health effects associated with the chemicals detected in the EPA’s samples. CDC’s review is designed to determine whether these pollutants in your community may cause health problems.

EPA is sharing the data collected by their teams and other entities like the various states on a daily basis. These daily packages typically include results from air, water and sediment sampling activities and occasionally results from samples of oily debris, tar balls, mousse oil and other petroleum waste products that have washed up on the shore along the Gulf Coast.. The data packages also include hourly readings from real-time field instruments and data from the EPA’s mobile laboratory known as the TAGA (Trace Atmospheric Gas Analyzer) van.

CDC will continue to interpret EPA’s data to provide additional public health information. If we begin to detect levels that may harm people, we will notify the authorities responsible for the area and work with the states and EPA to provide updates to the public. For the most up-to-date information on monitoring data and air quality along the Gulf Coast, see

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