EPA: New Directive to Prioritize Superfund Cleanups

In an effort to restore Superfund cleanup at the center of the U.S. EPA’s core mission, Administrator Scott Pruitt is prioritizing Superfund cleanup and streamlining the approval process for sites with remedies estimated to cost $50 million or more, EPA said. 

The revision to EPA’s delegation of authority will ensure decision making comes straight from the Administrator. EPA’s Superfund program is responsible for the cleanup some of the nation’s most contaminated areas.

“I am making it a priority to ensure contaminated sites get cleaned up. We will be more hands-on to ensure proper oversight and attention to the Superfund program at the highest levels of the Agency, and to create consistency across states,” said Administrator Scott Pruitt.

The Administrator of EPA has always had the authority to sign-off on Superfund remediation efforts. Until recently, however, this authority had been delegated many layers into the bureaucracy, resulting in confusion among stakeholders and delayed revitalization efforts.

Putting the decision of how to clean up the sites directly into the hands of the Administrator will help revitalize contaminated sites faster.

Administrator Pruitt has prioritized Superfund cleanup as part of his effort to refocus EPA on its intended mission.

Last month he visited the USS Lead Superfund Site in East Chicago, Ind., to view ongoing cleanup activities. Administrator Pruitt met with East Chicago residents, federal, state and local officials, and pledged improved coordination and communication as cleanup continues.

 

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