Homeland Security Research
Following the terrorist events of September 11, 2001 and the mailing of anthrax contaminated letters later that year, EPA's mission broadened to include protecting human health and the environment from the effects of biological, chemical, and radiological contamination due to homeland security events. Learn More
Tools and applications to assist states, local municipalities, and utilities design and operate resilient water systems.
Methods for determining how much and what kind of chemical, biological, or radiological contamination is present, as well as for communicating risk.
Models, Tools and Applications
BOTE Bio-Response Operational Testing and Evaluation
CANARY Contamination event detection software
EPANET-MSX Modeling complex reactions
I-WASTE Contaminated debris disposal database
LCAT Determining cost effective retrofitting to protect buildings
Message Mapping Science-based tools for crisis communication
PI CAT Tool to organize microbial dose-response data
RV-PCR Rapid viability polymerase chain reaction protocol
Safe Buildings Protective measures for design and operations of facilities
SERRA Knowledge base of biological agents
TEVA-SPOT Placing water quality sensors optimally
Biothreat Agents in Drinking Water Systems
The effectiveness of chlorination and chloramination in the inactivation of waterborne anthrax under typical ambient conditions.
EPA's Incident Waste Assessment & Tonnage Estimator (I-WASTE)
Version 6.1 includes a wide-area waste quantity estimator, which allows users to calculate disposal waste amounts for events involving several structures.
Rapid Viability PCR Method for Detection of Live Bacillus anthracis Spores
During the cleanup of an anthrax release, the ability to quickly determine whether residual anthrax spores are viable is a key analytical requirement.
Due to their complexity, many of the graphics and tables in our documents are not amenable to the use of screen readers. If you have difficulty accessing information on this website, please contact Kathy Nickel at email@example.com.
Other Research Topics
Top Three Questions
Following the attacks on September 11, 2001 and the Amerithrax incidents, EPA was asked to help address many challenging questions such as "what are the health impacts of being exposed to anthrax?", "how can we decontaminate and recover the use of the buildings that were attacked?", and "how can we detect harmful levels of chemical, biological or radiological contamination following an incident?" In 2002, the Agency created the National Homeland Security Research Center to address these and other homeland security issues. Since then we've responded to additional incidents involving mustard gas, ricin, and other homeland security threats.
Our primary responsibilities are to research ways to protect water infrastructure and to decontaminate buildings and public areas. This includes determining whether an attack has happened, characterizing the extent of its impacts, controlling contamination, assessing and communicating risks, getting useful information to first responders and safely disposing of clean-up materials. While we're not on the front lines like those agencies or EPA's own first responders, we do have a critical role to play. EPA's National Homeland Security Research Program conducts research covering chemical, biological and radiological contamination under laws such as the Safe Drinking Water Act, the 2002 Bioterrorism Act, Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act, and several Presidential Directives.
Yes, absolutely. Many departments and agencies do have related responsibilities, but we realize that we can each be more effective and efficient if we cooperate. We participate in dozens of inter-agency, domestic and international committees, working groups and task forces where our expertise and the results of our research are used and significantly contribute to planning for emergency response, clean-up and risk communication following a chemical, biological or radiological incident. We also undertake research jointly with other government entities.
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