42 USC 9620 - Federal facilities

(a) Application of chapter to Federal Government 

(1) In general 
Each department, agency, and instrumentality of the United States (including the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government) shall be subject to, and comply with, this chapter in the same manner and to the same extent, both procedurally and substantively, as any nongovernmental entity, including liability under section 9607 of this title. Nothing in this section shall be construed to affect the liability of any person or entity under sections 9606 and 9607 of this title.
(2) Application of requirements to Federal facilities 
All guidelines, rules, regulations, and criteria which are applicable to preliminary assessments carried out under this chapter for facilities at which hazardous substances are located, applicable to evaluations of such facilities under the National Contingency Plan, applicable to inclusion on the National Priorities List, or applicable to remedial actions at such facilities shall also be applicable to facilities which are owned or operated by a department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States in the same manner and to the extent as such guidelines, rules, regulations, and criteria are applicable to other facilities. No department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States may adopt or utilize any such guidelines, rules, regulations, or criteria which are inconsistent with the guidelines, rules, regulations, and criteria established by the Administrator under this chapter.
(3) Exceptions 
This subsection shall not apply to the extent otherwise provided in this section with respect to applicable time periods. This subsection shall also not apply to any requirements relating to bonding, insurance, or financial responsibility. Nothing in this chapter shall be construed to require a State to comply with section 9604 (c)(3) of this title in the case of a facility which is owned or operated by any department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States.

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(4) State laws 
State laws concerning removal and remedial action, including State laws regarding enforcement, shall apply to removal and remedial action at facilities owned or operated by a department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States or facilities that are the subject of a deferral under subsection (h)(3)(C) of this section when such facilities are not included on the National Priorities List. The preceding sentence shall not apply to the extent a State law would apply any standard or requirement to such facilities which is more stringent than the standards and requirements applicable to facilities which are not owned or operated by any such department, agency, or instrumentality.
(b) Notice 
Each department, agency, and instrumentality of the United States shall add to the inventory of Federal agency hazardous waste facilities required to be submitted under section 3016 of the Solid Waste Disposal Act [42 U.S.C. 6937] (in addition to the information required under section 3016(a)(3) of such Act [42 U.S.C. 6937 (a)(3)]) information on contamination from each facility owned or operated by the department, agency, or instrumentality if such contamination affects contiguous or adjacent property owned by the department, agency, or instrumentality or by any other person, including a description of the monitoring data obtained.
(c) Federal Agency Hazardous Waste Compliance Docket 
The Administrator shall establish a special Federal Agency Hazardous Waste Compliance Docket (hereinafter in this section referred to as the docket) which shall contain each of the following:
(1) All information submitted under section 3016 of the Solid Waste Disposal Act [42 U.S.C. 6937] and subsection (b) of this section regarding any Federal facility and notice of each subsequent action taken under this chapter with respect to the facility.
(2) Information submitted by each department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States under section 3005 or 3010 of such Act [42 U.S.C. 6925, 6930].
(3) Information submitted by the department, agency, or instrumentality under section 9603 of this title.

The docket shall be available for public inspection at reasonable times. Six months after establishment of the docket and every 6 months thereafter, the Administrator shall publish in the Federal Register a list of the Federal facilities which have been included in the docket during the immediately preceding 6-month period. Such publication shall also indicate where in the appropriate regional office of the Environmental Protection Agency additional information may be obtained with respect to any facility on the docket. The Administrator shall establish a program to provide information to the public with respect to facilities which are included in the docket under this subsection.

(d) Assessment and evaluation 

(1) In general 
The Administrator shall take steps to assure that a preliminary assessment is conducted for each facility on the docket. Following such preliminary assessment, the Administrator shall, where appropriate
(A) evaluate such facilities in accordance with the criteria established in accordance with section 9605 of this title under the National Contingency Plan for determining priorities among releases; and
(B) include such facilities on the National Priorities List maintained under such plan if the facility meets such criteria.

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(2) Application of criteria 

(A) In general 
Subject to subparagraph (B), the criteria referred to in paragraph (1) shall be applied in the same manner as the criteria are applied to facilities that are owned or operated by persons other than the United States.
(B) Response under other law 
It shall be an appropriate factor to be taken into consideration for the purposes of section 9605 (a)(8)(A) of this title that the head of the department, agency, or instrumentality that owns or operates a facility has arranged with the Administrator or appropriate State authorities to respond appropriately, under authority of a law other than this chapter, to a release or threatened release of a hazardous substance.
(3) Completion 
Evaluation and listing under this subsection shall be completed in accordance with a reasonable schedule established by the Administrator.
(e) Required action by department 

(1) RI/FS 
Not later than 6 months after the inclusion of any facility on the National Priorities List, the department, agency, or instrumentality which owns or operates such facility shall, in consultation with the Administrator and appropriate State authorities, commence a remedial investigation and feasibility study for such facility. In the case of any facility which is listed on such list before October 17, 1986, the department, agency, or instrumentality which owns or operates such facility shall, in consultation with the Administrator and appropriate State authorities, commence such an investigation and study for such facility within one year after October 17, 1986. The Administrator and appropriate State authorities shall publish a timetable and deadlines for expeditious completion of such investigation and study.
(2) Commencement of remedial action; interagency agreement 
The Administrator shall review the results of each investigation and study conducted as provided in paragraph (1). Within 180 days thereafter, the head of the department, agency, or instrumentality concerned shall enter into an interagency agreement with the Administrator for the expeditious completion by such department, agency, or instrumentality of all necessary remedial action at such facility. Substantial continuous physical onsite remedial action shall be commenced at each facility not later than 15 months after completion of the investigation and study. All such interagency agreements, including review of alternative remedial action plans and selection of remedial action, shall comply with the public participation requirements of section 9617 of this title.
(3) Completion of remedial actions 
Remedial actions at facilities subject to interagency agreements under this section shall be completed as expeditiously as practicable. Each agency shall include in its annual budget submissions to the Congress a review of alternative agency funding which could be used to provide for the costs of remedial action. The budget submission shall also include a statement of the hazard posed by the facility to human health, welfare, and the environment and identify the specific consequences of failure to begin and complete remedial action.
(4) Contents of agreement 
Each interagency agreement under this subsection shall include, but shall not be limited to, each of the following:
(A) A review of alternative remedial actions and selection of a remedial action by the head of the relevant department, agency, or instrumentality and the Administrator or, if unable to reach agreement on selection of a remedial action, selection by the Administrator.
(B) A schedule for the completion of each such remedial action.
(C) Arrangements for long-term operation and maintenance of the facility.
(5) Annual report 
Each department, agency, or instrumentality responsible for compliance with this section shall furnish an annual report to the Congress concerning its progress in implementing the requirements of this section. Such reports shall include, but shall not be limited to, each of the following items:
(A) A report on the progress in reaching interagency agreements under this section.
(B) The specific cost estimates and budgetary proposals involved in each interagency agreement.
(C) A brief summary of the public comments regarding each proposed interagency agreement.
(D) A description of the instances in which no agreement was reached.
(E) A report on progress in conducting investigations and studies under paragraph (1).
(F) A report on progress in conducting remedial actions.
(G) A report on progress in conducting remedial action at facilities which are not listed on the National Priorities List.

With respect to instances in which no agreement was reached within the required time period, the department, agency, or instrumentality filing the report under this paragraph shall include in such report an explanation of the reasons why no agreement was reached. The annual report required by this paragraph shall also contain a detailed description on a State-by-State basis of the status of each facility subject to this section, including a description of the hazard presented by each facility, plans and schedules for initiating and completing response action, enforcement status (where appropriate), and an explanation of any postponements or failure to complete response action. Such reports shall also be submitted to the affected States.

(6) Settlements with other parties 
If the Administrator, in consultation with the head of the relevant department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States, determines that remedial investigations and feasibility studies or remedial action will be done properly at the Federal facility by another potentially responsible party within the deadlines provided in paragraphs (1), (2), and (3) of this subsection, the Administrator may enter into an agreement with such party under section 9622 of this title (relating to settlements). Following approval by the Attorney General of any such agreement relating to a remedial action, the agreement shall be entered in the appropriate United States district court as a consent decree under section 9606 of this title.
(f) State and local participation 
The Administrator and each department, agency, or instrumentality responsible for compliance with this section shall afford to relevant State and local officials the opportunity to participate in the planning and selection of the remedial action, including but not limited to the review of all applicable data as it becomes available and the development of studies, reports, and action plans. In the case of State officials, the opportunity to participate shall be provided in accordance with section 9621 of this title.
(g) Transfer of authorities 
Except for authorities which are delegated by the Administrator to an officer or employee of the Environmental Protection Agency, no authority vested in the Administrator under this section may be transferred, by executive order of the President or otherwise, to any other officer or employee of the United States or to any other person.
(h) Property transferred by Federal agencies 

(1) Notice 
After the last day of the 6-month period beginning on the effective date of regulations under paragraph (2) of this subsection, whenever any department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States enters into any contract for the sale or other transfer of real property which is owned by the United States and on which any hazardous substance was stored for one year or more, known to have been released, or disposed of, the head of such department, agency, or instrumentality shall include in such contract notice of the type and quantity of such hazardous substance and notice of the time at which such storage, release, or disposal took place, to the extent such information is available on the basis of a complete search of agency files.
(2) Form of notice; regulations 
Notice under this subsection shall be provided in such form and manner as may be provided in regulations promulgated by the Administrator. As promptly as practicable after October 17, 1986, but not later than 18 months after October 17, 1986, and after consultation with the Administrator of the General Services Administration, the Administrator shall promulgate regulations regarding the notice required to be provided under this subsection.
(3) Contents of certain deeds 

(A) In general 
After the last day of the 6-month period beginning on the effective date of regulations under paragraph (2) of this subsection, in the case of any real property owned by the United States on which any hazardous substance was stored for one year or more, known to have been released, or disposed of, each deed entered into for the transfer of such property by the United States to any other person or entity shall contain
(i) to the extent such information is available on the basis of a complete search of agency files
(I) a notice of the type and quantity of such hazardous substances,
(II) notice of the time at which such storage, release, or disposal took place, and
(III) a description of the remedial action taken, if any;
(ii) a covenant warranting that
(I) all remedial action necessary to protect human health and the environment with respect to any such substance remaining on the property has been taken before the date of such transfer, and
(II) any additional remedial action found to be necessary after the date of such transfer shall be conducted by the United States; and
(iii) a clause granting the United States access to the property in any case in which remedial action or corrective action is found to be necessary after the date of such transfer.
(B) Covenant requirements 
For purposes of subparagraphs (A)(ii)(I) and (C)(iii), all remedial action described in such subparagraph has been taken if the construction and installation of an approved remedial design has been completed, and the remedy has been demonstrated to the Administrator to be operating properly and successfully. The carrying out of long-term pumping and treating, or operation and maintenance, after the remedy has been demonstrated to the Administrator to be operating properly and successfully does not preclude the transfer of the property. The requirements of subparagraph (A)(ii) shall not apply in any case in which the person or entity to whom the real property is transferred is a potentially responsible party with respect to such property. The requirements of subparagraph (A)(ii) shall not apply in any case in which the transfer of the property occurs or has occurred by means of a lease, without regard to whether the lessee has agreed to purchase the property or whether the duration of the lease is longer than 55 years. In the case of a lease entered into after September 30, 1995, with respect to real property located at an installation approved for closure or realignment under a base closure law, the agency leasing the property, in consultation with the Administrator, shall determine before leasing the property that the property is suitable for lease, that the uses contemplated for the lease are consistent with protection of human health and the environment, and that there are adequate assurances that the United States will take all remedial action referred to in subparagraph (A)(ii) that has not been taken on the date of the lease.
(C) Deferral 

(i) In general The Administrator, with the concurrence of the Governor of the State in which the facility is located (in the case of real property at a Federal facility that is listed on the National Priorities List), or the Governor of the State in which the facility is located (in the case of real property at a Federal facility not listed on the National Priorities List) may defer the requirement of subparagraph (A)(ii)(I) with respect to the property if the Administrator or the Governor, as the case may be, determines that the property is suitable for transfer, based on a finding that
(I) the property is suitable for transfer for the use intended by the transferee, and the intended use is consistent with protection of human health and the environment;
(II) the deed or other agreement proposed to govern the transfer between the United States and the transferee of the property contains the assurances set forth in clause (ii);
(III) the Federal agency requesting deferral has provided notice, by publication in a newspaper of general circulation in the vicinity of the property, of the proposed transfer and of the opportunity for the public to submit, within a period of not less than 30 days after the date of the notice, written comments on the suitability of the property for transfer; and
(IV) the deferral and the transfer of the property will not substantially delay any necessary response action at the property.
(ii) Response action assurances With regard to a release or threatened release of a hazardous substance for which a Federal agency is potentially responsible under this section, the deed or other agreement proposed to govern the transfer shall contain assurances that
(I) provide for any necessary restrictions on the use of the property to ensure the protection of human health and the environment;
(II) provide that there will be restrictions on use necessary to ensure that required remedial investigations, response action, and oversight activities will not be disrupted;
(III) provide that all necessary response action will be taken and identify the schedules for investigation and completion of all necessary response action as approved by the appropriate regulatory agency; and
(IV) provide that the Federal agency responsible for the property subject to transfer will submit a budget request to the Director of the Office of Management and Budget that adequately addresses schedules for investigation and completion of all necessary response action, subject to congressional authorizations and appropriations.
(iii) Warranty When all response action necessary to protect human health and the environment with respect to any substance remaining on the property on the date of transfer has been taken, the United States shall execute and deliver to the transferee an appropriate document containing a warranty that all such response action has been taken, and the making of the warranty shall be considered to satisfy the requirement of subparagraph (A)(ii)(I).
(iv) Federal responsibility A deferral under this subparagraph shall not increase, diminish, or affect in any manner any rights or obligations of a Federal agency (including any rights or obligations under this section and sections 9606 and 9607 of this title existing prior to transfer) with respect to a property transferred under this subparagraph.
(4) Identification of uncontaminated property 

(A) In the case of real property to which this paragraph applies (as set forth in subparagraph (E)), the head of the department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States with jurisdiction over the property shall identify the real property on which no hazardous substances and no petroleum products or their derivatives were known to have been released or disposed of. Such identification shall be based on an investigation of the real property to determine or discover the obviousness of the presence or likely presence of a release or threatened release of any hazardous substance or any petroleum product or its derivatives, including aviation fuel and motor oil, on the real property. The identification shall consist, at a minimum, of a review of each of the following sources of information concerning the current and previous uses of the real property:
(i) A detailed search of Federal Government records pertaining to the property.
(ii) Recorded chain of title documents regarding the real property.
(iii) Aerial photographs that may reflect prior uses of the real property and that are reasonably obtainable through State or local government agencies.
(iv) A visual inspection of the real property and any buildings, structures, equipment, pipe, pipeline, or other improvements on the real property, and a visual inspection of properties immediately adjacent to the real property.
(v) A physical inspection of property adjacent to the real property, to the extent permitted by owners or operators of such property.
(vi) Reasonably obtainable Federal, State, and local government records of each adjacent facility where there has been a release of any hazardous substance or any petroleum product or its derivatives, including aviation fuel and motor oil, and which is likely to cause or contribute to a release or threatened release of any hazardous substance or any petroleum product or its derivatives, including aviation fuel and motor oil, on the real property.
(vii) Interviews with current or former employees involved in operations on the real property.

Such identification shall also be based on sampling, if appropriate under the circumstances. The results of the identification shall be provided immediately to the Administrator and State and local government officials and made available to the public.

(B) The identification required under subparagraph (A) is not complete until concurrence in the results of the identification is obtained, in the case of real property that is part of a facility on the National Priorities List, from the Administrator, or, in the case of real property that is not part of a facility on the National Priorities List, from the appropriate State official. In the case of a concurrence which is required from a State official, the concurrence is deemed to be obtained if, within 90 days after receiving a request for the concurrence, the State official has not acted (by either concurring or declining to concur) on the request for concurrence.
(C) 
(i) Except as provided in clauses (ii), (iii), and (iv), the identification and concurrence required under subparagraphs (A) and (B), respectively, shall be made at least 6 months before the termination of operations on the real property.
(ii) In the case of real property described in subparagraph (E)(i)(II) on which operations have been closed or realigned or scheduled for closure or realignment pursuant to a base closure law described in subparagraph (E)(ii)(I) or (E)(ii)(II) by October 19, 1992, the identification and concurrence required under subparagraphs (A) and (B), respectively, shall be made not later than 18 months after October 19, 1992.
(iii) In the case of real property described in subparagraph (E)(i)(II) on which operations are closed or realigned or become scheduled for closure or realignment pursuant to the base closure law described in subparagraph (E)(ii)(II) after October 19, 1992, the identification and concurrence required under subparagraphs (A) and (B), respectively, shall be made not later than 18 months after the date by which a joint resolution disapproving the closure or realignment of the real property under section 2904(b) of such base closure law must be enacted, and such a joint resolution has not been enacted.
(iv) In the case of real property described in subparagraphs (E)(i)(II) on which operations are closed or realigned pursuant to a base closure law described in subparagraph (E)(ii)(III) or (E)(ii)(IV), the identification and concurrence required under subparagraphs (A) and (B), respectively, shall be made not later than 18 months after the date on which the real property is selected for closure or realignment pursuant to such a base closure law.
(D) In the case of the sale or other transfer of any parcel of real property identified under subparagraph (A), the deed entered into for the sale or transfer of such property by the United States to any other person or entity shall contain
(i) a covenant warranting that any response action or corrective action found to be necessary after the date of such sale or transfer shall be conducted by the United States; and
(ii) a clause granting the United States access to the property in any case in which a response action or corrective action is found to be necessary after such date at such property, or such access is necessary to carry out a response action or corrective action on adjoining property.
(E) 
(i) This paragraph applies to
(I) real property owned by the United States and on which the United States plans to terminate Federal Government operations, other than real property described in subclause (II); and
(II) real property that is or has been used as a military installation and on which the United States plans to close or realign military operations pursuant to a base closure law.
(ii) For purposes of this paragraph, the term base closure law includes the following:
(I) Title II of the Defense Authorization Amendments and Base Closure and Realignment Act (Public Law 100526; 10 U.S.C. 2687 note ).
(II) The Defense Base Closure and Realignment Act of 1990 (part A of title XXIX of Public Law 101510; 10 U.S.C. 2687 note ).
(III) Section 2687 of title 10.
(IV) Any provision of law authorizing the closure or realignment of a military installation enacted on or after October 19, 1992.
(F) Nothing in this paragraph shall affect, preclude, or otherwise impair the termination of Federal Government operations on real property owned by the United States.
(5) Notification of States regarding certain leases 
In the case of real property owned by the United States, on which any hazardous substance or any petroleum product or its derivatives (including aviation fuel and motor oil) was stored for one year or more, known to have been released, or disposed of, and on which the United States plans to terminate Federal Government operations, the head of the department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States with jurisdiction over the property shall notify the State in which the property is located of any lease entered into by the United States that will encumber the property beyond the date of termination of operations on the property. Such notification shall be made before entering into the lease and shall include the length of the lease, the name of person to whom the property is leased, and a description of the uses that will be allowed under the lease of the property and buildings and other structures on the property.
(i) Obligations under Solid Waste Disposal Act 
Nothing in this section shall affect or impair the obligation of any department, agency, or instrumentality of the United States to comply with any requirement of the Solid Waste Disposal Act [42 U.S.C. 6901 et seq.] (including corrective action requirements).
(j) National security 

(1) Site specific Presidential orders 
The President may issue such orders regarding response actions at any specified site or facility of the Department of Energy or the Department of Defense as may be necessary to protect the national security interests of the United States at that site or facility. Such orders may include, where necessary to protect such interests, an exemption from any requirement contained in this subchapter or under title III of the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act of 1986 [42 U.S.C. 11001 et seq.] with respect to the site or facility concerned. The President shall notify the Congress within 30 days of the issuance of an order under this paragraph providing for any such exemption. Such notification shall include a statement of the reasons for the granting of the exemption. An exemption under this paragraph shall be for a specified period which may not exceed one year. Additional exemptions may be granted, each upon the Presidents issuance of a new order under this paragraph for the site or facility concerned. Each such additional exemption shall be for a specified period which may not exceed one year. It is the intention of the Congress that whenever an exemption is issued under this paragraph the response action shall proceed as expeditiously as practicable. The Congress shall be notified periodically of the progress of any response action with respect to which an exemption has been issued under this paragraph. No exemption shall be granted under this paragraph due to lack of appropriation unless the President shall have specifically requested such appropriation as a part of the budgetary process and the Congress shall have failed to make available such requested appropriation.
(2) Classified information 
Notwithstanding any other provision of law, all requirements of the Atomic Energy Act [42 U.S.C. 2011 et seq.] and all Executive orders concerning the handling of restricted data and national security information, including need to know requirements, shall be applicable to any grant of access to classified information under the provisions of this chapter or under title III of the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act of 1986 [42 U.S.C. 11001 et seq.].