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Superfund

Contaminant, Media, and Site Type-Specific Remedy Guidance

On this page:

To access the documents listed on this page, please use the document search tool below. Searching by document title or Superfund terms will generate a table of relevant results.

Note: Not all documents may be available at this time. EPA continues to update its website to enhance public access to Superfund-related information.


Contaminant Specific

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Asbestos

Guidance on Non-NPL Removal Actions Involving Nationally Significant or Precedent-Setting Issues (PDF)(9 pp, 69 K)
March 1989, OSWER 9360.0-19
Outlines the defining criteria to determine if a non-NPL removal action requires Headquarters concurrence. Asbestos removals are included.
 

Dioxin

Fact Sheet on the Management of Dioxin Contaminated Soils (PDF)(28 pp, 708 K)
Provides guidance on the proper management of dioxin-contaminated soils in the CERCLA remedy selection process.

Approach for Addressing Dioxin in Soil at CERCLA and RCRA Sites  (6 pp, 44 K)
Recommends preliminary remediation goals (PRGs) or starting points for setting cleanup levels for dioxin in soil at CERCLA and RCRA sites. 

Headquarters Consultation for Dioxin Sites (PDF)(2 pp, 31 K)
December 1996, EPA 540/F-97-014, OSWER 9200.4-19, NTIS: PB97-963225
Requests that Regions consult with Headquarters on sites where remediation goals are to be developed for dioxin in soil.

Guidance on Non-NPL Removal Actions Involving Nationally Significant or Precedent-Setting Issues (PDF)(9 pp, 69 K)
March 1989, OSWER 9360.0-19
Outlines the defining criteria to determine if a non-NPL removal action requires Headquarters concurrence. Dioxin removals are included.

Frequently Asked Questions on the Update to the ATSDR Policy Guideline for Dioxins and Dioxin-Like Compounds in Residential Soil (PDF) (8 pp, 1.2 MB)
December 2008, OSWER 9285.7-84FS 

Lead (Pb)

Lead at Superfund Sites
Contains links to Lead Guidance, Software Lead Analytical Models, Documentation, Short Sheets (updates to Guidance), and Fact Sheets. For additional information, the TRW Home Page is accessible from this page.

Lead Site Response Decisions: Formation of the Lead Sites Consultation Group (PDF)(5 pp, 56 K)
May 1997, OSWER 9355.4-26
Reiterates the three site criteria that could trigger review of lead-related Proposed Plans and summarizes the consultation requirements for such sites.

Administrative Reforms for Lead Risk Assessment (PDF)(38 pp, 1.5 MB)
April 1996, EPA 540/F-97/015, OSWER 9200.4-20, NTIS: PB97-963226
Outlines the specific steps to implement the 1995 Administrative Reform principles concerning lead contamination.

Focus Areas for Headquarters Support for Regional Decision-Making (PDF)(24 pp, 1.3 MB)
May 1996, OSWER 9200.1-17
Identifies selected issue areas that represent the current focus of OSRTI's national Regional coordination effort. A discussion of lead policy is included as one of the focus areas.

Guidance on Non-NPL Removal Actions Involving Nationally Significant or Precedent-Setting Issues (PDF)(9 pp, 69 K)
March 1989, OSWER 9360.0-19
Outlines the defining criteria to determine if a non-NPL removal action requires Headquarters concurrence. Lead contamination from consumer products requires appropriate consultation.

Mercury

Concurrence Policy for Mercury Removals (PDF)(3 pp, 37 K)
May 1998, OSWER 9360.1-05
Modifies Headquarters consultation requirements concerning removal actions addressing certain residential mercury contaminations. Mercury contamination will no longer be considered "nationally significant." unless the contamination is contained within the building structure, in which case consult requirements should be followed in accordance with the OSWER directive 9360.3-12: "Response Actions at Sites with Contamination Inside Buildings".
 
Response Actions at Sites with Contamination Inside Buildings (PDF)(6 pp, 104 K)
August 1993, OSWER 9360.3-12, NTIS: PB94-963269INX
In the event the contamination is contained within the building structure, in which case consult requirements should be followed in accordance with the OSWER directive 9360.3-12: "Response Actions at Sites with Contamination Inside Buildings".

 

Metals

Presumptive Remedy for Metals-in-Soil Sites (PDF)(48 pp, 199 K)
September 1999, EPA 540/F-98/054, OSWER 9355.0-72FS
Establishes preferred treatment technologies for metals-in-soil waste and recommends containment for the low-level risk waste. Use of this presumptive remedy should streamline remedy selection by narrowing the alternatives considered in the Feasibility Study (FS) or Engineering Evaluation/Cost Analysis (EE/CA).

Methane

CERCLA Removal Actions at Methane Release Sites (PDF)(2 pp, 30 K)
January 1986, OSWER 9360.0-8
Clarifies OSRTI policy regarding removal actions at methane gas release sites under CERCLA authority.

Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (MTBE)

MTBE Treatment Profiles
Contains a searchable database of 250 methyl tert-butyl ether (MTBE) treatment profiles. The profiles include both completed and ongoing treatment technologies - both in situ and ex situ - for MTBE in drinking water, ground water, and soil.

Headquarters Consultation for Addressing Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether (MTBE) Contamination Under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) (PDF)(2 pp, 32 K)
May 1997, OSWER 9200.4-21
Requests Headquarters consultation when considering the use of CERCLA authority to address MTBE contamination.

Pesticides

Guidance on Non-NPL Removal Actions Involving Nationally Significant or Precedent-Setting Issues (PDF)(9 pp, 69 K,)
March 1989, OSWER 9360.0-19
Outlines the defining criteria to determine if a non-NPL removal action requires Headquarters concurrence. Pesticide removals are included.

Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs)

Guidance on Remedial Actions for Superfund Sites with PCB Contamination (PDF)(152 pp, 1.4 MB)
August 1990, EPA 540/G-90/007, OSWER 9355.4-01, NTIS: PB91-145466INX
Provides a recommended approach for evaluating and remediating Superfund sites with PCB contamination. Provides starting point cleanup levels for various media and describes how to develop remedial alternatives for PCB contamination. This guidance is no longer active. However, many of our web visitors have a continuing interest in the history of approaches used at Superfund sites.

Fact Sheet: A Guide on Remedial Actions at Superfund Sites with PCB Contamination (PDF)(5 pp, 484 K)
August 1990, OSWER 9355.4-01FS, NTIS: PB90-274432INX
Summarizes the above guidance (OSWER 9355.4-01) concerning development, evaluation, and selection of remedial actions at Superfund sites with PCB contamination. Discussion includes: determining cleanup levels, identifying treatment options, and assessing necessary management of residuals. This guide is no longer active. However, many of our web visitors have a continuing interest in the history of approaches used at Superfund sites.

Engineering Issue: Technology Alternatives for the Remediation of PCB-Contaminated Soil and Sediment (PDF)(26 pp, 376 K)
June 2012, EPA/600/S-13/079
This EPA Engineering Issue Paper provides information to facilitate the selection of appropriate treatment and disposal alternatives for soil and dredged sediment contaminated with PCBs. This information includes the type of data and site characteristics needed by site cleanup managers to evaluate primarily ex-situ technologies—incineration, landfill disposal, thermal desorption, solvent extraction, solidification/stabilization, and chemical dehalogenation—for potential applicability to hazardous waste site cleanup.

CLU-IN: Treatment Technologies for PCBs
This website provides information on treatment technologies for the cleanup of PCB -contaminated soils and sediments; technologies used to date as well as promising methods.

Radiation

Key OSWER Radiation Guidance and Reports
Provides links to key Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response (OSWER) radiation guidance, as well as selected reports which are used frequently by Superfund Remedial Project Managers.

Guidance on Non-NPL Removal Actions Involving Nationally Significant or Precedent-Setting Issues (PDF)(9 pp, 69 K)
March 1989, OSWER 9360.0-19
Outlines the defining criteria to determine if a non-NPL removal action requires Headquarters concurrence. Radioactive removals are included.

Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs)

Presumptive Remedy: Supplemental Bulletin Multi-Phase Extraction (MPE) Technology for VOCs in Soil and Groundwater (PDF)(11 pp, 75 K)
Remediation of VOC-contaminated sites is most commonly achieved through selection of a presumptive remedy that is optimal based on a site's specific characteristics. Provides several topics, including VOCs, that link to guidance for remedy selection.

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Media Specific

Air Contamination

ARARs Fact Sheet: Compliance with the Clean Air Act and Associated Air Quality Requirements (PDF)(28 pp, 2.1 MB)
September 1992, OSWER 9234.2-22FS
Provides updated guidance on compliance with the Clean Air Act, as amended November 1990, and related air quality rules under other environmental statutes. Addresses statutory and regulatory changes that have occurred subsequent to the publication of the CERCLA Compliance with other Laws Manual, Parts I & II (1989).

Ground Water Contamination

Key OLEM Ground Water Guidance and Reports
Provides a comprehensive selection of ground water guidance on subjects to include: ARARs, various Treatment Technologies, Monitored Natural Attenuation, Non-Aqueous Phase Liquids (NAPLS), Performance Evaluation/Close-Out, Remedy Selection, RODs, Removal Action, Site Assessment, Use Determinations, and Technical Impracticability.

Focus Areas for Headquarters Support for Regional Decision-Making (PDF)(24 pp, 1.3 MB)
May 1996, OSWER 9200.1-17
Identifies selected areas that represent the current focus of OSRTI's national Regional coordination effort. A discussion of ground water policy is included as one of the focus areas.

Sediments Contamination

Principles for Managing Contaminated Sediment Risks at Hazardous Waste Sites2(PDF)(11 pp, 76 K)
February 2002, OSWER Directive 9285.6-08
Presents eleven risk management principles to use as guidelines for site assessment and response when addressing contaminated sediment sites. This directive is consistent with the strategies of the NRC 2001 report "A Risk Management Strategy for PCB-Contaminated Sediments." Headquarters consultation requirements are included.

In Situ Treatment of Contaminated Sediments (PDF)
Provides a summary of in situ treatment technologies for contaminated sediments written by a National Network of Environmental Management Studies Fellow. Contains data gathered from a range of sources including project documents, periodicals, Web pages, and personal communication. The sources were not independently confirmed.
December 1998, Technology Innovation Office (TIO) Report
 

A Risk-Management Strategy for PCB-Contaminated Sediments (2001) Exit
At the request of Congress, EPA commissioned the National Research Council to investigate contaminated sediment site strategies and provide recommendations for addressing such sites. Provides a risk-based framework for developing and implementing strategies to manage PCB-contaminated sediments. Although focused on PCBs, much of the information is applicable to other contaminants. You may view or order the report from the National Academy Press Web site for a fee.

GLNPO Assessment and Remediation of Contaminated Sediments (ARCS) Report
ARCS was an integrated program for the development and testing of assessment and remedial action alternatives for contaminated sediments. Provides technical reports containing results of assessments of contaminated sediments by the Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO) of the U.S. EPA between 1988 and 1994. Although the studies were focused on specific sites, these reports contain information applicable to any contaminated sediment site.

Remediation of Contaminated Sediments Handbook
The Handbook was published by ORD to provide guidance on approaches for remediating contaminated sediment sites. Topics covered include physical/chemical characteristics of sediments, sediment toxicity assessment methods, sampling methods, dredging techniques, pretreatment, treatment technologies, and disposal and containment options. Data from sediment treatability studies for various technologies are provided.

Soil Contamination

Soil Screening Guidance
Tool for screening contaminated National Priorities List (NPL) sites that are not affected with radioactive contaminants. The Soil Screening Guidance (SSG) presents a tiered framework for developing risk-based, soil screening levels (SSLs) for protection of human health. This page provides links to several soil screening doucments available.

Soil Screening Guidance for Radionuclides
Provides a framework for developing soil screening levels (SSLs) for radionuclides, focusing primarily on a simple methodology for developing site-specific screening levels, but also including generic soil screening levels and detailed models for more complete site conditions. This page contains links to several technical and guidance doucuments.

Presumptive Remedy for Metals-in-Soils Sites (PDF)
September 1999, EPA 540/F-98/054, OSWER 9355.0-72FS, NTIS:PB99-963301
Identifies a presumptive remedy for metals-in-soil sites, and summarizes technical factors (including limitations on the applicability of this directive) that should be considered when selecting a presumptive remedy for these sites. Development has been a joint effort between the EPA and the Department of Energy (DOE).

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Site Type-Specific Remedies

Building Contamination

Response Actions at Sites with Contamination Inside Buildings (PDF)(6 pp, 102 K)
August 1993, OSWER 9360.3-12, NTIS: PB94-963269INX
Addresses the use of the CERCLA authority to conduct response actions within buildings that are contaminated. Includes a flow-chart that defines the appropriate steps to take when addressing indoor contamination. Headquarters consultation requirements are defined. See updated policies concerning mercury contamination in "Concurrence Policy For Mercury Removals" (May 1998).

Response Actions that Affect Residential or Commercial Structures (PDF)(2 pp, 29 K)
May 1998, EPA 540/F-98/029, OSWER 9360.3-20, NTIS: PB98-963243
Specifies for Regions to consult with OSWER, through their OSRTI Regional Accelerated Response Center, before making any final decisions regarding a response which will impact a residential or commercial building.

Landfills

Presumptive Remedy for CERCLA Municipal Landfill Sites  (14 pp, 483 K)
Offers several topics, including "Municipal Landfills", that link to standardized guidance for remedy selection. Superfund's past experience in site remediation of landfills has given the EPA the expertise to develop several landfill remedies based on typical site characteristics.

Conducting Remedial Investigations/Feasibility Studies for CERCLA Municipal Landfill Sites (PDF)(305 pp, 2 MB)
February 1991, EPA 540/P-91/001, OSWER 9355.3-11
Utilizes the Presumptive Remedy approach for addressing the RI/FS processes at municipal landfills. Defines site characterization strategies, identifies remedial action alternatives, and recommends containment as the preferred remedy.

Feasibility Study Analysis for CERCLA Municipal Landfill Sites (PDF)(262 pp, 3.8 MB)
August 1994, EPA 540/R-94/081, OSWER 9356.0-03, NTIS: PB95-963301
Presents an evaluation of the technologies considered in the Feasibility study at 30 municipal landfill sites. Concludes that certain technologies were routinely screened out based on effectiveness, implementability, or excessive costs. This document is intended to be used as a key reference in the Administrative Record as technical basis for limiting analysis of remedial alternatives to those technologies recommended in the OSER Dirctive 9344.0-49FS entitled "Presumptive Remedy for CERCLA Municipal Landfill Sites."

Mining Operations

  • Appendix (PDF)(280 pp, 1.7 MB)
    August 2000, EPA 910-B-00-001

This Handbook has been developed by the EPA as a resource for project managers addressing the environmental concerns posed by inactive mines and mineral processing sites. This information was developed primarily for EPA staff, but may also prove useful to others working on mine site characterization and cleanup projects. This Handbook is not policy or guidance, and users are encouraged to refer to appropriate agency guidance and/or policy.

Consideration of RCRA Requirements in Performing CERCLA Responses at Mining Waste Sites (PDF)(19 pp, 1 MB)
August 1986, OSWER 9234.0-4
Delineates how Superfund will address mining waste problems taking into account Subtitle D requirements as well as options for addressing risks not addressed by Subtitle D requirements. For more information there is an attached Code of Federal Regulations: 40 CFR Part 261 entitled "Regulatory Determination For Wastes From the Extraction and Beneficiation of Ores and Minerals."

Guidance on Non-NPL Removal Actions Involving Nationally Significant or Precedent-Setting Issues (PDF)(9 pp, 69 K)
March 1989, OSWER 9360.0-19
Outlines the defining criteria to determine which non-NPL removal actions require Headquarters concurrence, and which non-NPL removals are subject to other policy procedures. Mining site removals should be handled according to the policy procedures specified.

Wetlands

Considering Wetlands at CERCLA Sites (PDF)(46 pp, 357 K)
May 1994, EPA 540/R-94/019, OSWER 9280.0-03, NTIS:PB94-963242
Aims to provide Superfund site managers and regional wetlands program personnel with policy guidance that will be useful when considering potential impacts of response actions on wetlands at Superfund sites.

Wood Treating Facilities

Presumptive Remedies: Technology Selection Guide for Wood Treater Sites fact sheet (PDF)  (8 pp, 80 K)
Presumptive Remedies for Soils, Sediments, Sludges at Wood Treater Sites (PDF)  (62 pp, 276 K)
The industrial sites of wood treater industries often contain soils, sediments, and sludges contaminated primarily with creosote, pentachlorophenol, and/or chromated copper. Because these pollutants are common among most wood treater activities, the EPA has developed presumptive remedies to expedite the remedy selection process associated with this industry.

Superseded Documents

 This document supersedes:

1 PCB Contamination at Superfund Sites-Relationship of TSCA Anti-Dilution Provision to Superfund Response Action - Memorandum (PDF)

Fiscal Year 2001 Appropriations Conference Report Language on Contaminated Sediments" - Memorandum (PDF)(3 pp, 32 K)
March 2001, OSWER 9200.0-36