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Round 2-9a: Risk Sharing -- Implementing Innovative Technology

Reform Description
To promote the use of innovative technologies that may achieve faster, less costly cleanups, EPA will agree to share the risks associated with implementing innovative technologies for a limited number of approved projects by "underwriting" the use of certain promising innovative approaches. EPA may agree to reimburse up to 50 percent of the cost of selected innovative remedies if the remedy fails and subsequent remedial action is required.

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Reform Status
check mark Implementation of this reform is complete.

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  • The Agency implemented risk sharing at four sites as of September 1999. EPA successfully negotiated a risk-sharing agreement with a PRP at the Somersworth Sanitary Landfill site (see Success Stories below).

  • The Agency issued final guidance on implementing the risk-sharing initiative in March 1998 (see Documents below).

  • In FY98, EPA approved two new risk sharing proposals:

    1. Use of electrokinetics, primarily to remove arsenic at the 2251 Armour Road site in Region 7. The risk sharing agreement addresses pilot-scale studies.
    2. Use of constructed wetlands to address various contaminants at the North Bronson Industrial Landfill in Region 5.

  • EPA has been working to engage State agencies in this reform through the Interstate Technology & Regulatory Cooperation Work Group. exit EPA

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Success Stories

Dublin, PA NPL Site

EPA entered into a risk sharing agreement with PRPs at the Dublin, PA NPL site in Region 3. The Agency agreed to pay half the cost of the innovative In Site Chemical Oxidation (ISCO) technology (not to exceed $915K) if the remedy fails and further remedial action is required. It is hoped that the ISCO remedy will allow more timely and effective restoration of the groundwater resource than would otherwise be the case if a traditional pump and treat remedy were implemented. This remedial action is also innovative/noteworthy in that the contamination is located in the fractured bedrock at considerable depth. [FY04 Success]

Somersworth Sanitary Landfill, Somersworth, NH

EPA entered into a risk-sharing agreement with a PRP at the Somersworth Sanitary Landfill site. The Agency agreed to pay half the cost of the innovative technology (not to exceed $3.5 million) if the technology does not fulfill expectations and additional remedial action is necessary. The technology involved -- an innovative "funnel and gate" -- helps restore ground water by channeling the flow to a permeable wall containing iron filings. Contaminants are removed as they pass through the gate. If successful, this in situ technology may serve as an alternative to costly and protracted "pump and treat" approaches. [FY97 Success]

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NOTE: For related documents, see the Publications page of the TIO website.

Title: Guidance for Implementing Superfund Reform Initiative 9a: Risk Sharing
Date: March 24, 1998
Document #: OSWER 9010.02
Synopsis: EPA developed this guidance to support implementation of the risk sharing initiative. Under this initiative, EPA agrees to share the risk of implementing innovative remediation technologies that have potential to improve performance and reduce costs.

Title: Risk Sharing Reform - Background, Status and Experience to Date
Date: September 2005
Synopsis: This document provides an overview of information for Reform 2-9a: Risk Sharing - Implementing Innovative Technology, including examples of innovative technology used at specific Superfund sites.

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