A clean, healthy environment is essential to supporting the Department of the Navy's (DoN's) primary mission of maintaining fleet readiness. Most DoN installations provide a variety of support functions for aircraft, submarines, and ships. Unfortunately, historic waste management practices associated with these activities sometimes resulted in the release of contaminants to soil, sediment, and groundwater at DoN sites before better waste management practices were developed to protect the environment.
The purpose of the DoN Environmental Restoration (ER) Program is to reduce the risk to human health and the environment from legacy waste disposal operations and hazardous substance spills at DoN activities, including certain oil spills that are not addressed by the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) regulatory framework.
The program goal is to provide for cost-effective and timely site assessment, planning, and remediation of identified releases. The ER Program includes the Installation Restoration Program (IRP) and the Munitions Response Program (MRP):
- The IRP addresses releases of hazardous substances, pollutants, or contaminants that pose toxicological risks to human health or the environment. Most of the environmental projects conducted in the IRP are conducted in accordance with CERCLA, which is the environmental framework used by EPA to remediate Superfund sites. However, the IRP may also address Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Corrective Actions and Petroleum Releases if they are historical releases eligible for Defense Environmental Restoration Program (DERP) funding. If these types of releases are associated with current operations, they are generally addressed by the Environmental Compliance Program.
- The MRP addresses environmental health and safety hazards from unexploded ordnance (UXO), discarded military munitions, and munitions constituents. Incidental to hazardous waste remediation, a limited number of hazards associated with military munitions were addressed under the IRP. DoD created the MRP to more thoroughly address potential hazards remaining from its past use of military munitions.
NAVFAC manages and executes the DoN's IRP and MRP; provides expertise in environmental engineering; provides contracting, technical, and legal support; and coordinates all DoN Environmental Restoration (ER) actions. NAVFAC Southwest is responsible for overseeing the DoN's ER Program at Navy and Marine Corps sites within the Southwest region (CA, NV, AZ, NM, UT, CO).
NAVFAC also provides project management and contracting support for the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) ER program. NAVFAC RPMs are forward deployed in support to the BRAC Program Management Office (PMO) for all DoN BRAC environmental cleanup projects.