Frequent Questions

What is an ?Eligible Response Site? and what other CERCLA provisions does that designation affect?

CERCLA section 101(41)(A) defines an eligible response site as a site that meets the definition of a “brownfield site” in section 101(39). Section 101(41)(B) includes certain sites otherwise excluded from the definition and authorizes EPA to include certain additional sites as eligible response sites based on site-specific statutory criteria. The definition of eligible response site affects CERCLA sections 105(h) and 128(b). Generally, Section 128(b) limits EPA’s authority at eligible response sites to take enforcement or cost recovery actions against persons who are conducting or have conducted a response action in compliance with a state program that governs response actions for protection of public health and the environment. Section 105(h) outlines circumstances when EPA should conditionally defer an eligible response site from final listing on the National Priorities List (NPL). If the Region excludes a site from being an eligible response site, that site will not be subject to the deferral provisions in section 105(h) and the limitations on EPA’s enforcement and cost recovery authorities under section 128(b) will not apply at that site. More information on eligible response sites is available in the 3/6/2003 guidance titled "Regional Determinations Regarding Which Sites Are Not "Eligible Response Sites" under CERCLA Section 101(41)(C)(i), as Added by the Small Business Liability Relief and Brownfields Revitalization Act".

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