Waste and Cleanup Risk Assessment
RCRA Risk Assessment
EPA's Risk Assessment Programs:
View Waste and Cleanup Risk Assessment program-specific resources organized by topic:
Resource and Conservation Recovery Act
Additional RCRA Information:
EPA's solid and hazardous waste program was established under the Resource and Conservation Recovery Act (RCRA). Within RCRA, risk assessment is used in a variety of ways. Risk information is an essential factor in determining which industrial wastes are judged to be hazardous and should therefore be managed under the RCRA hazardous waste system. Risk assessment is also used in targeting waste minimization efforts and in issuing operating permits. Similar to its use in the Superfund program, risk assessment is also used to determine the need for cleanup actions at permitted facilities and in setting cleanup goals for human health and ecological receptors. The goal of all these efforts is to avoid or minimize risks from the generation and management of hazardous wastes.
Choose a topic at the top of the page to view RCRA-related Risk Assessment information.
RCRA Risk Assessment Paradigm
This diagram represents the components of ecological and human health risk assessments in the CERCLA (Superfund) and RCRA programs. Risk Assessments may proceed in a straightforward, linear fashion, but often repeat stages depending on sampling and analytical results and on decisions made by risk assessors and risk managers. Hence, the components of a risk assessment are shown in a circular fashion, rather than strictly linear (click on the map for more information on the various topics).
Although Ecological Risk Assessments in RCRA are often done in an eight-step process, those steps can be combined into the four categories in the "Ecological Risk Assessment" circle. For more information on the eight-step process please visit either of the following links:
- Ecological Risk Assessment in Superfund (an overview of the eight-step process)
- Ecological Risk Assessment Guidance for Superfund: Process for Designing and Conducting Ecological Risk Assessments - Interim Final
For additional information on the Human Health process in RCRA, see Risk Assessment Guidance for Superfund (RAGS) Part A