Ready for Reuse is a new measure of success among the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) cleanup programs, and is a key component of EPA's National Land Revitalization Initiative. The concept was developed by EPA Region 6 in Dallas, and has become a part of EPA’s National Land Revitalization Initiative. The goal of this initiative is to make land revitalization and reuse a fundamental element of all EPA and State cleanup programs (e.g., RCRA, Superfund, Brownfields, tanks, voluntary cleanups, etc.) to help foster economic development, and return previously contaminated or abandoned properties back to productive use.
This new measure recognizes when a site or facility has been addressed to the extent that it is safe for reuse or redevelopment. The Land Revitalization Initiative represents a change in the EPA’s focus: it’s not enough to merely cleanup a site (to protect the
environment and the public’s health), only to then put a fence around it and leave it idle. The goal now is to come full circle and return the property to productive use for the benefit of the community around it. This is not intended to be a clean-closure approach; rather, it encourages cleanups that will quickly support protective redevelopment opportunities. As part of this effort, a regulatory "certification" is provided that will be an affirmatory determination that the site is considered acceptable for its designated reuse. The "ready for reuse" determination verifies that the environmental conditions on a property are protective of human health and the environment based on its current use and anticipated future use as a commercial/industrial operation.
In its simplest form, the Region 6 Ready for Reuse Program is a certification process that recognizes when contamination has been evaluated and, if necessary, cleaned up to the extent that a property is safe for its current use or planned future use.
The primary purpose of the Ready for Reuse determination is to document, in a straightforward manner, specific information about the current environmental conditions on a property (i.e., concentrations of contaminants present and their associated risks), the work performed at the site to address risks, and to identify that the entire facility – or portions of the facility – are ready for reuse.
Louisiana’s participation in the Ready for Reuse Program
Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality has committed to utilize the land use revitalization program “Ready for Reuse”, together with the existing Brownfields and Voluntary Remediation Programs to help promote redevelopment opportunities at
facilities and sites throughout the state. These include operating facilities as well as facilities that are not in full use, where there is development or redevelopment potential, and where reuse or development of these sites is slowed due to concerns about RCRA requirements.
Key aspects of the Ready for Reuse Program