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Norwood, Pennsylvania

Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA)

A Federal law (commonly known as “Superfund”) passed in 1980 and modified in 1986 by the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act (SARA). The law gives EPA the authority to investigate sites where there is a suspected threat to public health, or the environment caused by the release or potential release of hazardous substances. The law created a special tax on the chemical and petroleum industries. Money collected under the tax was deposited into a trust fund to be used to clean up abandoned or uncontrolled waste sites. (This special tax was discontinued in 1995. Now monies for the trust fund comes from Congress.)