VR - GIEC

Report
The Voluntary
Remediation Program
Progress In An Evolving Program
September 2012
Keith Bentley
Chief, Land Protection Branch
Georgia EPD

Legislation effective June 1, 2009
◦ Objective is to privatize and expedite cleanup
◦ End points the same as HSRA
◦ Investigation and remediation supervised by
PE/PG and paid by VRP applicant
No funding to establish program initially
VIRP Application and checklist developed
in April 2010
 Applications started to flow in 2010
 No rules were promulgated


Brief History of VRP
2
Conventional HSRA Approach
•
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EPD issues call for CAP
Responsible party (RP) submits
investigation plan
EPD reviews/comments
Investigation plan revised and
initiated
EPD approves site delineation
RP submits remediation plan to
meet HSRA clean up standards
EPD reviews/comments
Remediation plan revised and
initiated
RP submits Compliance Status
Report when remediation complete
EPD approves CSR and removes
site from HSI
Prescriptive Approach
VRP Approach
• RP develops general
investigation remediation
approach
• Application for entry into VRP
submitted to EPD
• EPD approves general
approach with comments
• Delineation and clean up
criteria generally less stringent
• RP submits semi-annual
progress reports
• RP submits CSR when
remediation complete
• EPD approves CSR/delists site
Flexible Approach
VRP vs HSRA Approach
3
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VRP works when:
◦ Groundwater contamination contained on
“controlled” property
◦ Receptor farther away from source
◦ Participant is in compliance with rules, orders, etc.
VRP does not work when:
◦
◦
◦
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Site is on NPL list
Site is subject to EPA remediation order
Site has RCRA permit
Groundwater contamination is technically difficult to
contain/remediate
◦ Surface water or off site wells are impacted
VRP Is Not For Every Site
4
Applications Received, Approved and Sites Delisted by Year
30
25
20
15
10
5
0
2009
2010
2011
2012 (July)
2012 (est.)
Applications Received
2
29
17
10
17
Applications Approved
0
11
14
19
25
Sites Delisted by VRP
0
1
0
1
5
Year
A Look At The Numbers
5
Breakdown of the 14 Unapproved Applications
Application Incomplete
3
Application Withdraw n
2
Issues w /HWMA Orders
2
Under Review
7
Current Status of Unapproved Applications
6
Too long to get in program
 Too many “conditions”
 Too much management by EPD of details
 “ It feels like HSRA.”

Criticisms of the VRP Program
7
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Developing guidelines and examples for
acceptable applications
Updates to FAQ on web site
Developing more consistent response to
applications
Developing model consent order for
converting HWMA orders to VRP
Improving response time- need complete
application to approve quickly
Improvements to VRP Program
8
Site vs. property questions
What happens if site leaves VRP before
remediation complete?
 What happens if remediation plan not successful?
 Expanded use of environmental covenants
 Financial Assurance issues
 Evolving technical issues
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Vapor intrusion assessment
Area averaging
Groundwater modeling
Surface water issues
What is the proper level of EPD review up front?
Challenges and Evolving Issues
9
VRP could be used as excuse to delay
 Responsible party could “engineer shop”
for the answer they want
 VRP may not be a permanent solution if
controls become inadequate
 Less involvement of EPD upfront, may
result in more uncertainty around
acceptable end points- do not want
surprises at the end

Potential VRP Pitfalls
10
Benefits for Applicant
• Certainty in clean up
requirements
• Lower transaction costs
• Control of investigation and
clean up approach
• Lower remediation cost
• Faster delisting from HSI
affecting property
transfers, financing , etc.
Benefits for EPD
• Faster site clean up
• More sites removed from
HSI
• Less staff time spent on
oversight
• More resources to work on
other sites
Sites Cleaned up and Returned to Productive Use
Benefits of VRP
11

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