Just a straightforward informational post. MassDEP has issued a concise, helpful, guidance on performing response actions during COVID-19. Here are the highlights:
- All release notifications are still required within MCP deadlines.
- MassDEP is still taking oral notice of Immediate Response Actions and issuing oral approvals. It is still reviewing written IRA plans. If MassDEP does not respond to a within plan 21 days, then the plan is deemed approved.
- Other routine submittals should be made to the extent practical. If they cannot be made, a notice of delay should be filed. MassDEP will exercise enforcement discretion with regard to delayed routine submittals.
- Active remedial systems should be operated unless they cannot be monitored to ensure that the discharge from the system would be safe. If not, the PRP may consided temporary suspension of operations, unless that would in itself present an imminent hazard.
- Active Exposure Pathway Mitigation Measures addressing vapor intrusion or private drinking water supplies must continue to operate. If they are addressing IHs, then they must be monitored, consistent with COVID-19 safety precautions. If there is no IH, then monitoring should be suspended until the emergency is over.
- Construction sites should be secured.
- Remedial work is considered essential during the emergency and workers performing remedial functions are not included within the Governor’s order to close non-essential businesses.
All in all, a helpful and appropriate bit of guidance. I might even say that this is the perfect example of when guidance is appropriate and what it should address.