Integrating Reuse Into Cleanup
New Approaches for Assessing Properties
Policy Innovations to Remove Obstacles to Reuse
Corrective Action Policy Tools
EPA has provided guidance to Regional and State corrective action project managers on a variety of enforcement approaches that can be used to accomplish timely, protective, and efficient corrective action at Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) facilities. A number of the innovative approaches that EPA regional offices and authorized states have developed can be found by visiting the RCRA Cleanup Policy & Guidance page. Some of the tools that have been useful at many facility cleanups include public participation, RCRA/CERCLA coordination, and other tools such as comfort letters and Prospective Purchaser Agreements.
Transfers of Contaminated Federal Properties
To implement Congressionally mandated action, EPA has issued guidance on the transfer of federal property contaminated with hazardous wastes, before cleanup completion. In the past, contaminated federal property had to undergo complete cleanup if hazardous waste was released from, disposed of, or stored on-site for more than one year prior to transfer. Now, property can be transferred prior to cleanup, as long as certain conditions are met. By transferring property that poses no unacceptable risks, EPA helps communities benefit from faster reuse and redevelopment.
Learn more about federal facility cleanup and reuse
Parceling contaminated properties is a useful tool that has the potential to make valuable real estate resources available for revitalization, providing benefits to the community before, rather than after, final cleanup of the entire site. Information on the agency's parceling effort can be found at:
- Guidance of EPA Concurrence on the Identification of Uncontaminated Parcels
- Military Base Closures: Guidance on EPA Concurrence in the Identification of Uncontaminated Parcels under CERCLA Section 120(h)(4)
- Final Guidance on Completion of Corrective Action Activities at RCRA Facilities (PDF) (8 pp, 72K, About PDF)
- Close Out Procedures for National Priorities List Sites (PDF) (45 pp, 133K, About PDF)
Technical Support to Communities
Technical Assistance Grants (TAGs) provide money for activities that help communities participate in decision making at eligible Superfund sites. An initial grant up to $50,000 is available to qualified community groups so they can contract with independent technical advisors to interpret and help the community understand technical information about their site, including how sites can be cleaned up to support their future use. Since the first TAG was awarded in 1988, more than $20 million has been awarded directly to community groups.
Assistance to Brownfields Communities (TAB) program has been
established as part of EPA's Brownfields Program to help communities clean
up and redevelop properties that have been damaged or undervalued by environmental
contamination. The purpose of these efforts is to create better jobs,
increase the local tax base, improve neighborhood environments, and enhance
the overall quality of life.
The Technical Outreach Services for Communities (TOSC) program helps citizens better understand the hazardous contamination issues in or near their communities by providing free, independent, non-advocate, technical assistance about contaminated sites. TOSC is part of the Hazardous Substance Research Centers (HSRCs), university consortiums that conduct research on hazardous contamination issues with funding assistance from EPA. As part of the HSRCs, TOSC can tap into the technical expertise of the university environmental researchers that will best meet a community's needs. Learn more about the TOSC program.
Uncertainties associated with Liability
EPA is working to clarify regulations that are related to liability to stakeholders involved in the cleanup and redevelopment of contaminated properties by issuing policies and guidance under its cleanup programs, including: