MMA testified during a public hearing last week in opposition to proposed changes to Part 201 environmental remediation rules. MMA’s opposition to the rules as written rooted in failure of the rules to achieve to be based on sound science and administrative effectiveness.
MMA’s participation and dedication of resources has been extensive throughout the multi-year process, including involvement in the Criteria Stakeholder Advisory Group (CSA) in 2014, which was supposed to form the basis of updated Part 201 rules.
“We had hoped that our efforts would result in reaching consensus on at least the issues that have the greatest influence on the effectiveness of the Part 201 program,” said Andy Such, MMA director of environmental and regulatory policy. “Our hope was to have the updated rules follow the principles set out at the start of the CSA process, to which all stakeholders had agreed.”
During the CSA process, a key principle was determined to be:
It is critically important during this reevaluation of the Part 201 rules that the generic cleanup criteria be appropriately calibrated to ensure that sites of real concern are identified and addressed — and that sites with minimal potential for public health or environmental harm are not inadvertently brought into the Part 201 process.
“We are disappointed that the December 2017 proposed rules still do not follow this principle and, in fact, this version is essentially the same as the October 2016 proposed rules, at least relating to the key issues,” said Such. “We strongly suggest the Department consider creating a ‘Version 4’ before moving these rules to the final approval process including public comment and action by the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules.”
Among MMA’s main concerns and suggested changes to see in the final version of the Part 201 Criteria rule were:
- Vapor Intrusion
- Petroleum Vapor Intrusion
- USDA Soil Selection
- IRIS Values
- Single Event Exposures
- Exposure Factors
- Demand on Limited Resource
“The bottom line is that there is no legislative or substantive statutory support for most of these proposed program changes, and these program changes will, if implemented, have the exact opposite effect of moving parties towards expeditious and comprehensive cleanup goals,” said Such. “The MMA urges the Department to consider and address each and every concern from all stakeholders in this process before these rules are promulgated.”
This item originally appeared in the 1/23/18 issue of MFG Voice.