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Regulatory Information

Stop 16: Remediation

Highlighted Topic:  Superfund & Remediation

Tour Stop 16You may have an area on your site with hazardous materials contamination.  Perhaps this contamination stems from previous activities or even from a prior owner.  Perhaps this contamination arises from some current operation (such as spills during product transfer activities).  Depending on the type and extent of contamination, the site may become a candidate for remediation.  (Your first order of business in this case will be to notify EPA and other authorities)

You may also become involved in remediation occurring at another site; for example, at a hazardous waste treatment site you have used in the past.  Regardless of how much waste you contributed to a site, you can still be held liable for cleanup costs if a release occurs.

CERCLA – known as "Superfund" – is the major federal law governing cleanup of abandoned, contaminated sites.  If a site is selected for Superfund cleanup, there will be a risk assessment and feasibility study to determine how cleanup should be conducted, and finally a cleanup alternative will be selected. Many states have additional – and sometimes more stringent –  state-level Superfund requirements.

While Superfund covers cleanup of many types of releases from past practices, any release of contamination from operating TSD facilities, underground storage tanks, or underground injection wells will be covered by "corrective action" plans.  These plans will specify the kinds of remediation to be performed, and other technical and administrative requirements. In general, corrective action plans are similar to  CERCLA cleanup plans, but are applied to operating facilities.

Other Regulatory Issues:

Similarly to construction activity, remediation work is covered by the standard pollution control regulations.  For example, you will have to manage both direct discharges and fugitive emissions from remediation activities.