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Cleanups at Federal Facilities

Streamlining Federal Facility Cleanup

The purpose of this fact sheet is to summarize findings from a newly released report entitled "Streamlining Initiatives: Impact of Federal Facilities Cleanup Process" (OSWER 9272.0-12, PB97-963310).

Purpose

For the past five years the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) have undertaken a number of initiatives designed to streamline the cleanup of contaminated sites, in particular those classified as federal facilities. Initiatives underway demonstrate cost, timesaving, and quality improvements for the Comprehensive Environmental Restoration Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA), or Superfund, cleanup process. Together these initiatives result in new, more flexible cleanup for current regulatory and statutory framework.

Common Themes

A review of sixteen streamlining initiatives identified six common themes:

Collaborative Decision Making - Use of partnering as a foundation for CERCLA decisions, including streamlining oversight;

Process Standardization - approaches,such as presumptive remedies, to standardize portions of the process;

Risk Screening and Early Focus on Remedies - Use of decision tools to identify the need for action and thus provide early focus on a likely remedy;

Regulatory Integration - Integration of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) with CERCLA actions: lead agency division of labor;

Early Action and Faster Decisions - Undertaking a variety of early actions through removal and interim remedial actions, as information becomes available. Phased responses with contingency planning to support rapid action concurrently with on-going studies;

Technical Tools - Technical means by which efficiency of the Superfund process is enhanced.

Streamlining Initiatives

A. COLLABORATIVE DECISION MAKING B. RISK SCREENING AND EARLY FOCUS ON REMEDIES C. EARLY ACTIONS AND FASTER DECISIONS D. PROCESS STANDARDIZATION E. REGULATORY INTEGRATION F. TECHNICAL TOOLS
Partnering Soils Screening Levels (SSL) Superfund Accelerated Cleanup Model (SACM) Presumptive Remedies RCRA/CERCLA Integration Environmental Data Management and Decision Support (EDMDS)
Streamlined Oversight Rational National Standards Initiative (RNSI) Streamlined Approach for Environmental Restoration (SAFER) Initiative Presumptive Remedy Engineering Evaluation Cost Analysis (PREECA) Lead Agency Division of Labor Performance Based Contracting
Base Closure Teams: Fast Track Cleanup Land Use Guidance Contents in Columns A, B and F Preferred Alternatives Matrices (PAM)    
  Contents in Column F   Records of Decision (ROD)    

Potential Cost and Time Saving Examples

  • The U.S. Air Force estimates up to 19 months and $500,000 per site can be saved using PREECA.
  • DOE proclaims Regulatory Integration can save $20,000 per decision document and reduce duration time from remedial investigation (RI) to ROD from 3 years to 1.5 years;
  • The Safer Initiative documented savings of RI field work on-site from 11 to 4 months thus reducing the overall remediation schedule by 2 years;
  • Potential savings from the Partnership Initiative documented savings of investigation cost and time ranging from $200,000 and 2 years, to $20,000 and 6 months.