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Superfund Financial Responsibility

Superfund Financial Responsibility

Section 108(b) of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA, commonly called Superfund) gives EPA (and, for transportation-related facilities, the Department of Transportation) the authority to require that classes of facilities maintain financial responsibility consistent with the degree and duration of risk associated with the production, transportation, treatment, storage or disposal of hazardous substances.

Focus on Mining

In July 2009 EPA designated portions of the hard rock mining industry as its priority for the development of financial responsibility requirements.

This CERCLA Section 108(b) rulemaking is intended to assure the availability of funds for hazardous substance response should a mining or mineral processing company declare bankruptcy or be otherwise unable to conduct necessary response activities. It may also apply to old mining areas located on, or adjacent to, active mining sites.

EPA plans to propose a financial responsibility rule in 2014 for classes of facilities within the hard rock mining and mineral processing industries.

Additional Industry Classes

EPA has also identified additional classes of facilities for development of CERCLA Section 108(b) financial responsibility requirements, including those in the chemical manufacturing, petroleum and coal products manufacturing, and the electric power generation, transmission, and distribution industries. Although EPA has not begun to analyze these industry sectors, we intend to carefully examine specific activities, practices, and processes involving hazardous substances to determine the risks they pose, as well as federal and state authorities, policies and practices to address those risks, in order to determine whether requirements under CERCLA Section 108(b) will reduce those risks.

Public Notifications of EPA Actions under CERCLA Section 108(b)

  • Notice identifying hard rock mining as the first classes of facilities for which EPA will develop needed CERCLA Section 108(b) financial responsibility requirements: Identification of Priority Classes of Facilities for Development of CERCLA Section 108(b) Financial Responsibility Requirements, July 2009.
    See:
    http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=EPA-HQ-SFUND-2009-0265-0001
  • Advanced notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM) that identified additional classes of facilities for development of CERCLA Section 108(b) financial responsibility requirement: Identification of Additional Classes of Facilities for Development of Financial Responsibility Requirements under CERCLA Section 108(b); Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, December 2009.
    See:
    http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=EPA-HQ-SFUND-2009-0834-0001

 

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