• IDEM Releases Draft Remediation Closure Guide - Comments Due June 20, 2011
  • May 16, 2011 | Authors: David R. Gillay; John M. Kyle
  • Law Firm: Barnes & Thornburg LLP - Indianapolis Office
  • On May 6, 2011, the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) released its much-anticipated draft Remediation Closure Guide (RCG). A copy of the RCG can be viewed and downloaded at www.in.gov/idem/4694.htm. Barnes & Thornburg will host a seminar on May 19 from 1 p.m.-5 p.m. (ET) to discuss the RCG that will include a panel of experts who have been working on this guidance for many months. The purpose of this Remediation Summit will be to discuss various important details about the RCG including issues that might be worthy of comment.

    When finalized, the RCG will supersede IDEM’s existing guidance known as the Risk-Integrated-System-of-Closure (RISC) Technical and Users Guides, which were published in 2001. Like RISC, the RCG is being proposed as a “non-rule policy document” and therefore IDEM must follow certain statutory procedures, including a public comment period, before it becomes effective. IDEM’s announcement states that it will accept comments through June 20, 2011. However, given the importance of this document and the fact that IDEM’s announcement says it does not plan to present the RCG to the Solid Waste Board until November 2011, it is at least possible this comment period could be extended. Interested parties can submit comments to Lora McKee, Office of Land Quality, 100 North Senate Avenue, Room 1101, Indianapolis, Indiana 46204 or [email protected].

    The RCG provides new guidance for the investigation, remedy selection, and closure of contaminated sites. This guide has been in development for several years and will usher in significant changes for years to come for all of Indiana’s remediation programs ¿ Leaking Underground Storage Tanks, State Cleanup, Voluntary Remediation Program, Brownfields, and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act TSD Closure and Corrective Action. Among other things, the draft RCG also provides IDEM’s latest thinking on how it intends to comply with the dictates of one of its governing risk-based statutes, HEA 1162, which became law in 2009.

    We are studying this proposed guide closely with particular focus on the proposed changes to assessing the vapor intrusion pathway, demonstrating that a groundwater plume is stable, default procedures for deriving closure levels (now known as “screening levels”), and selecting and documenting a closure strategy. The May 19 Summit, to be held live in Indianapolis and available at various other Barnes & Thornburg locations, will provide further information regarding these and other issues raised by the RCG.