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Guidance about Planning for Natural Disaster Debris

The 2019 “Planning for Natural Disaster Debris” guidance is an update to the version that EPA published in March 2008. It is designed to help all communities (including cities, counties, territories, tribes, etc.) create disaster debris management plans, which EPA strongly encourages.

The Planning for Natural Disaster Debris guidance assists communities in planning for natural disaster debris before a disaster occurs, including hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, volcanoes, floods, wildfires and winter storms, by providing useful, relevant information that is intended to increase community preparedness and resiliency. Information is included on the following:

  • Recommended components of a debris management plan,
  • Suggested management options for various natural disaster debris streams,
  • A collection of case studies that highlights how several communities prepared for and managed debris generated by recent natural disasters,
  • Resources to consult in planning for natural disasters, and
  • EPA’s recommended pre-incident planning process to help prepare communities for effective disaster debris management.

Note: EPA integrated lessons learned from the 2017 hurricane seasons into this 2019 final guidance document.

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