May 2018

EPA’s Brownfield Program Gets Much Needed Funds and Changes

The Brownfields Utilization, Investment and Local Development (BUILD) Act was enacted on March 23, 2018 as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2018. The BUILD Act reauthorized EPA’s Brownfields Program, and made amendments to the 2002 Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act. Read about some of the significant aspects of the act here ….

US Attorney General Prohibits Use of Guidance Documents as De Facto Rules and Regulations

The regulated community is all too familiar with State and Federal agencies reliance on guidance documents as de facto rules and regulations. In an effort to address this and associated legal issues the U.S. Attorney General released, on November 17, 2017, a memo prohibiting the use of guidance in lieu of notice-and-comment rulemaking. This was followed by a January 25, 2018 memo stating that DOJ litigators may not use noncompliance with guidance documents as a basis for proving violations of applicable law in affirmative civil enforcement cases. Make sure your legal council is aware of these memos, and discuss with them how you might use these documents to push back on the misuse of agency guidance.

EPA  Revises Johnson & Ettinger Model for Vapor Intrusion

The Johnson and Ettinger (J&E) Model is used to estimate the chemical concentrations in indoor air from vapor intrusion (VI). EPA’s earlier spreadsheet versions of the model were useful, but they had some serious limitations. To read about EPA’s improved version of the J&E model, read on…..

Implementing the Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements Rules – Hazardous Waste Determinations

The Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements Rules became effective at the federal level on May 30, 2017. The final rule represents the most significant changes to the generator rules since the program was implemented nearly four decades ago. States with RCRA authority are required to adopt the more-stringent provisions of the rule by July 1, 2018, or July 1, 2019, if the state regulatory process includes a legislative step.  Last month, we examined which rules EPA considers more stringent and less stringent than existing federal provisions. This month, we will dive into some of the more notable changes in the Generator Improvement Rules, starting with the first step in the RCRA cradle to grave requirements – hazardous waste determinations.

May 2018 Regional Screening Level Update

Earlier this month (May 15, 2018 to be exact), EPA updated its Regional Screening Levels (RSLs). Those of you caught in the never-ending requirement for the use of “current” or “the most recent” screening levels will need to begin utilizing the May 2018 RSLs. Luckily, the changes are relatively limited. Those compounds for which RSLs changed are hydrazine, and the herbicides and insecticides bromoxynil octanoate, chlorsulfuron, cyromazine, dicrotophos, flurprimidol, pendimethalin, methyl pirimiphos, and propargite. In addition, the fluoride MCL is now assigned to fluoride, sodium fluoride, and fluorine (soluble fluoride) in the RSL tables. For more information, see the What’s New page on the RSL website.

Update Regarding Waters of United States Rulemaking

The latest news in the continuing chronicle regarding “Waters of the United States” came at the end of April when Scott Pruitt, the Administrator of the U.S. EPA made the statement that there would be a proposed Clean Water Act rule within weeks, and that the 2015 Obama-era rule would be replaced by the end of this year.

Cox-Colvin & Associates, Inc.

Project Spotlight

Coming Soon in the June Newsletter

  • Defining Cooperative Federalism
  • Sub-slab soil gas sampling
  • Use of subsurface models for environmental compliance
  • OIG reports on Self Insurance as a financial assurance mechanism

Upcoming Events

Cox-Colvin & Associates, Inc. personnel are actively involved in the technical and regulatory aspects of the environmental field as it evolves. Cox-Colvin will be participating as presenters, sponsors, or exhibitors at the following environmental conferences in the coming months.

June 6, 2018: Vapor Pin will be demonstrating with our Canadian Distributors, Hoskin Scientific LTD at the GOwen Environmental – Contaminated Site Management at the Outdoor Demonstration Site in Toronto, Canada.