Parties Must Provide RPS Of Contaminated Site in New Jersey

August 27, 2012
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Under the New Jersey Site Remediation Reform Act (SRRA), N.J.S.A. 58:10-23.16, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) is required to rank New Jersey contaminated sites in its Remedial Priority Scoring (RPS) System.  The SRRA required NJDEP to establish a ranking system establishing categories of sites based upon the level of risk to the public health, safety, or the environment, the length of time the site has been undergoing remediation, the economic impact of the contaminated site on the municipality and surrounding property, and other factors deemed relevant by NJDEP.

The RPS System is a computerized model which NJDEP has developed to categorize New Jersey contaminated sites based upon these factors.  The RPS model utilizes multiple geographic data bases and layers, receptor information, and site specific groundwater, soil, and vapor intrusion sampling data in determining a site score.  The RPS score equals the Site Condition Score times the Receptor Score.  The Site Condition Score is the type and extent of contaminants at a site and the Receptor Score is determined by the proximity of receptors to a site based upon the existence of a pathway between the contamination and the receptors.  Once the RPS score is determined, the Site  is cataloged for relative ranking with sites with similar scores and is placed into Categories 1 through 5.  Category 1 represents the lowest score and the least potential risk, and Category 5 represents the highest score and the greatest potential risk.  NJDEP will use the RPS information to help determine whether appropriate remedial measures are being implemented at a given site or whether direct NJDEP oversight of remediation at the site is needed.

In or about May 2012, NJDEP sent out letters to persons identified as responsible for conducting remediation at sites which attached current NJDEP database information relating to the site and which requested that the responsible person correct or update the listed information.  NJDEP is providing responsible persons with this opportunity to correct or update the input values relating to their sites before NJDEP runs the RPS model and posts the results relating to the site.  The deadline for responsible persons to provide updated and corrected information relating to their sites to NJDEP is September 30, 2012.  While submission of this information is voluntary, it is important that you review NJDEP’s database information relating to your site and make the necessary corrections and updates so that your New Jersey contaminated site is correctly ranked in NJDEP’s Remedial Priority Scoring (RPS) System.

John Scagnelli is a Partner of Scarinci Hollenbeck and chair of the Environmental and Land Use Law Group. For more information contact:

John M. Scagnelli, Esq.
Scarinci Hollenbeck
1100 Valley Brook Avenue
Lyndhurst, New Jersey 07071
(201) 896-4100 (201) 896-4100
jscagnelli (at) scarincihollenbeck.com