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Web Standard: Archive


The archive consists of web content that is:
  • No longer maintained
  • Separated from the active collection
  • Kept available in public access for historical or reference purposes
  • Distinguished by a banner (HTML page) or watermark (PDF)
  • Located and searchable only at 

Content Requirements

  • Archive content is identified by the content owner.
  • Do NOT link directly to archived materials. Link only to the homepage of the Archive from WebCMS content pages.
  • When adding a link to the EPA archives from active collection webpages in the WebCMS, use the “Search the EPA Archive” (a button in the WYSIWYG editor). The button that is added to the page will create a link to the homepage (

Content that May Not be Archived

  • NEPIS/NSCEP content
  • Superfund content that is in or belongs in the Superfund Enterprise Management System (SDMS/SEMS)
  • Content belonging to other Agencies including GPO (Federal Register) or
  • Content that should be retired and removed from the active content collection because it is obsolete and does not reflect current EPA policy, decisions, etc. Use Redundant, Outdated, Trivial (ROT) review to decide if content should be archived or deleted.

About Archiving

  • Content for primary audiences does not belong in the archive. It belongs in the active collection.
  • Many file types can be archived: HTML, PDF, WMV, CSV and others. When archiving a page, attached files will also be archived. Links directly to files may break when archived.
  • Links to content that has been moved to archive will break.
  • EPA's Procedure: Web Content Types and Review requires that content owners review the content they have archived every three years.
    • Content can become ROT and be removed by a request to OMS (WCSD Web Team).
    • Content can be transformed into active One EPA web content.
      • Duplicate content should be removed from the archive when new EPA content is published to the active collection.
    • Content can be determined to be useful and remain in the archive collection.
  • Many links are broken in archived content. The notice at the top of archive content notifies customers that the content is not maintained.
    • Content owners can arrange services through Working Capital Fund (WCF) TZ to repair broken links or any other maintenance.

How People Will Find Archive Content

  • Archive results appear in the top facet in search results.
  • When adding a link to the archive homepage from an active collection homepage, you can provide tips and/or keywords to help users find content.

About this Standard

All EPA public web content must adhere to the EPA Web Standards, the U.S. Web Design System guidelines, and the 21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act.

Original effective date: 02/11/2015
Last approved on: 04/08/2020
Web Council review by: 04/08/2023 (or earlier if deemed necessary by the Web Council)