Groundwater Cleanup: Cross-Program Task Force
Groundwater is an essential national resource - over half of the U.S. population relies on it for drinking water. However a large percentage of the nation's contaminated sites impacts groundwater. And groundwater contamination is usually very difficult to characterize and clean up, often requiring decades of treatment and monitoring. Almost every cleanup program must devote a significant level of attention and resources to groundwater issues.
Each groundwater contamination problem is uniquely complex, yet there are many common issues related to the management and cleanup of these problems. It is important that the nation's cleanup programs share the knowledge of their unique groundwater problems and work together to ensure the most effective, efficient and protective groundwater cleanups.
- The task force will serve as the main technical / policy / communication
/ networking resource for OSWER on groundwater issues.
- The task force will promote cross-program coordination and communication
on technical and policy issues related to the cleanup of contaminated
- The task force will identify, prioritize and work to solve and/or
provide guidance on groundwater issues and projects that will benefit
multiple cleanup programs.
- For priority issues and projects, the task force will either assign a subgroup to work on the issue, or make recommendations to EPA senior management on the best course of action.
- The task force currently includes senior staff from multiple HQ offices,
including OSWER cleanup programs, Office of Water, Office of Research
and Development, Office of Site Remediation and Enforcement, Office
of Air and Radiation, and Office of Prevention, Pesticides and Toxic
- Regions are represented by the lead Region for Superfund, lead Region
for RCRA and the Ground Water Forum.
- States and Tribes are invited to participate.
- Stakeholders (industry/environmental groups) will be actively consulted.
- The task force will consult closely with EPA office directors and
the Cleanup Program Directors Council, and will periodically brief the
OSWER and OECA Assistant Administrators.
- The task force will actively network with and participate in activities
of state, tribal, local government, industry and environmental organizations.
- The task force will work with EPA offices and regions to develop and
interpret policies and guidance.
- Other activities may include the evaluation of case studies on new cleanup approaches; consultation on the national policy implications of site specific issues; participation in training seminars; recommendations for research projects; participation in roundtable meetings.