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Hazardous Waste

Special Focus Areas for Hazardous Waste Cleanups under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA)

In order to manage the new and changing needs of the RCRA Corrective Action Program, EPA is constantly exploring program enhancements, alternate exposure pathways, and new technologies available to protect human health and environment.

On this page:

Long-Term Stewardship

Long-term stewardship is one of EPA’s current efforts at RCRA corrective action facilities. It applies to many corrective action facilities where long-term management of contaminated environmental media is necessary and generally includes the establishment and maintenance of physical and legal controls.

Information for Community Members

EPA developed a guide to provide community members with information about the role of institutional controls (ICs) in Superfund, Brownfield, Federal Facility, Underground Storage Tank (UST), and RCRA cleanups occurring in their neighborhoods.

Information for Environmental Professionals

EPA developed a number of documents to aid environmental professionals with institutional controls:

Document Title Document Description

Institutional Controls: A Guide to Preparing Institutional Control Implementation and Assurance Plans at Contaminated Sites

The purpose of this document is to provide guidance to the EPA Regions for developing Institutional Control Implementation and Assurance Plans (ICIAPs) for contaminated sites where the response action includes an institutional control component. Specifically, an ICIAP focuses on identifying the details of how ICs that are selected in decision documents should be implemented, maintained, enforced, modified, and terminated (if applicable) at a specific facility

Institutional Controls: A Guide to Planning, Implementing, Maintaining, and Enforcing Institutional Controls at Contaminated Sites

The purpose of this guidance is to provide managers of contaminated sites, site attorneys, and other interested parties with information and recommendations that should be useful for planning, implementing, maintaining, and enforcing ICs.

Institutional Controls: A Site Manager’s Guide to Identifying, Evaluating and Selecting Institutional Controls at Superfund and RCRA Corrective Action Cleanups  

This fact sheet provides Superfund and RCRA Corrective Action project managers and decision-makers with an overview of the types of Institutional Controls (ICs) that are commonly used or implemented and outlines the factors that should generally be considered when evaluating and selecting ICs as part of the remedy.

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RCRA Corrective Action Lean Efforts

In an effort to improve the efficiency of the RCRA Corrective Action Program, an analysis was led by EPA Regions 3 and 7 using the Lean process improvement system. Lean refers to a collection of principles and methods that focus on the systematic identification and elimination of non-value added activity involved in producing a product or delivering a service to customers.

RCRA Facility Investigation (RFI)

The first process selected for efficiency improvement within the Corrective Action Program was the RFI, which surveys the nature and extent of contamination at a facility. It was determined that by removing various redundant steps within the RFI process and frontloading goals and expectations through a "Corrective Action Framework" (CAF), significant time savings can potentially be achieved. Currently, this process is being piloted in all EPA regions.

Consistent with the Lean process, many of the tools below are living documents and will be updated as the implementation progresses. The steps and tools used to create the Corrective Action Framework (CAF) are outlined in three documents EPA developed to assist in setting up a CAF meeting and creating a CAF.

A Toolbox for Corrective Action: RCRA Facilities Investigation Remedy Selection Track (FIRST)

The RCRA FIRST Toolbox and associated tools help EPA regional staff and their partners improve the efficiency of facility investigations and remedy selection. The Toolbox includes a how-to guidance, process flow maps and templates to make it easier to complete the FIRST process.

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