The CERCLA reference article from the English Wikipedia on 24-Apr-2004
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CERCLA is an acronym for the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, 42 U.S.C. §§ 9601 to 9675 (commonly known as the Superfund), which was enacted by the United States Congress on December 11, 1980 in response to the Love Canal disaster. This law created a tax on petroleum and chemical industries and provided broad Federal authority to respond directly to releases or threatened releases of hazardous substances that may endanger public health or the environment. Over five years, $1.6 billion was collected and the tax went to a trust fund for cleaning up abandoned or uncontrolled hazardous waste sites.

CERCLA established prohibitions and requirements concerning closed and abandoned hazardous waste sites, and:

The law authorizes two kinds of response actions:

CERCLA also enabled the revision of the National Contingency Plan (NCP). The NCP provided the guidelines and procedures needed to respond to releases and threatened releases of hazardous substances, pollutants, or contaminants. The NCP also established the National List of Priorities Sites.

CERCLA was amended by the Superfund Amendments and Reauthorization Act, (SARA), on October 17, 1986, and is implemented by the Agency for Toxic Substance Disease Registry as well as the Department of Toxic Substance Control, and the Department of Justice among other state and federal branches of government.

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