CIMC - About the Data

Background

Accidents, spills, leaks, and past improper disposal and handling of hazardous materials and wastes have resulted in tens of thousands of sites across our country that have contaminated our land, water (groundwater and surface water), and air (indoor and outdoor). EPA and its state and territorial partners have developed a variety of cleanup programs to assess and, where necessary, clean up these contaminated sites.

Cleanups in My Community is intended to provide information about sites that are being cleaned up, or have been cleaned up, in your community or anywhere in the United States. We provide what data are available, and those data are limited by what we can legally collect. See legal notices page for more information on data limitations.

CIMC is an ever-green application – always improving. We are open to new ideas on how CIMC can be improved, please contact us with your ideas.

Current Scope of Sites Included in Cleanups in My Community

Currently, CIMC only shows sites, facilities and properties for which EPA collects information by law, or voluntarily via grants. At present, this does not include state or locally funded cleanups. In addition, data in this system is updated according to the data update schedule and may not yet reflect real changes at the locations covered here.

Currently, CIMC only includes data for the following EPA programs:

  • Brownfields Properties: Grantees may report information on Brownfield properties recieving federal grants. Data are collected from grantees via ACRES and transferred to Envirofacts for access by the public.
  • Brownfields Grants Jurisdictions: Geographic areas covered by specific Brownfields grants. These data are collected through ACRES and transferred to Envirofacts for access by the public.
  • RCRA Corrective Action: Facilities cleaned up under the corrective action program of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). These are data collected from the states using RCRAInfo and transferred to Envirofacts for access by the public. Only facilities data which states designate as being on the 2020 Baseline for Corrective Action and for public access are included in CIMC.
  • Superfund: Superfund sites that are on the National Priority List (NPL), are proposed for the NPL and have been deleted from the NPL. Data are collected from EPA Regions via the Superfund Enterprise Management System and transferred to Envirofacts for access by the public.
  • Federal Facilities: Sites that are Superfund and/or RCRA Corrective Action sites. Data are collected using the Superfund Enterprise Management System and RCRAInfo and transferred to Envirofacts for access by the public.
  • Removals/Responses: Generally more urgent cleanups. Data are provided by On Scene Coordinators (OSCs) through epaosc.org and transferred to CIMC for additional access to the public.  However, data about Incidents of National Significance are located on their own EPA web pages, and CIMC links to those pages.
  • Recovery Act Funded Cleanups: CIMC provides information on Superfund and Brownfields site cleanups that received ARRA Recovery Act funding, but not on the Leaking Underground Storage Tanks sites. For information on all EPA Recovery Act funded work, please see: EPA’s Recovery Mapper

Other (non-cleanup) data mappable in CIMC:

Links to Related Data

Links are provided to some additional resources to help you access local, state and federal information about cleanup sites that are not reported back to EPA and are not in Cleanups in My Community. These links are available at the bottom of the Cleanups in My Community page.

Cleanup Program and Status

Each cleanup program is founded on different legislation with different reporting and tracking requirements. Consequently, the categories used, and the information available for each program is  different.

Brownfields

Brownfields data in CIMC includes both properties and grants jurisdictions:

Brownfields Properties

Brownfields are real properties, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant. Cleaning up and reinvesting in these properties takes development pressures off of undeveloped, open land, and both improves and protects the environment. CIMC provides information on Brownfields properties for which information is reported back to EPA, as well as areas served by Brownfields grants programs. Brownfields properties may be mapped or listed, and property profiles can be accessed from either maps or lists. There are many properties that meet the definition of a brownfield but are not funded by our program.

Brownfields Grants Jurisdictions

Only properties benefitting from EPA Brownfields grant funding and technical assistance appear in Cleanups in My Community. There are different types of grants and each grant covers a specific area of geography. Grant areas can overlap, and often do. You can map and list Brownfields grant areas. Simply choose Brownfields Grants Jurisdictions as your program filter and map or list them for the geography you choose. On the map, Brownfields jurisdictions will be shown as colored boundaries. Grant Jurisdictions have their own reports and fact sheet. You can get to the reports by choosing to map the grant areas and then clicking on the areas on the map, or by clicking on a report in the grant listing. For more information on Brownfields grants, see Brownfields Grants and Funding.

Data

The Brownfields data are reported by grant recipients via the ACRES database and updated and stored in Envirofacts monthly. For more information on the data updates to Envirofacts, please visit the Envirofacts Data Update page. Data in CIMC are updated on the 18th of each month.
 

RCRA Corrective Action

The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, among other things, helps ensure that wastes are managed in an environmentally sound manner so as to protect human health and the environment from the potential hazards of waste disposal (More on RCRA).

In particular, (RCRA) tightly regulates all hazardous waste from "cradle to grave." In general, all generators, transporters, treaters, storers, and disposers of hazardous waste are required to provide information about their activities to state environmental agencies. These agencies, in turn pass on the information to regional and national EPA offices. Accidents or other activities at facilities that treat, store or dispose of hazardous wastes have sometimes led to the release of hazardous waste or hazardous constituents into soil, ground water, surface water, or air. When that happens, the RCRA Corrective Action program is one program that may be used to accomplish the necessary cleanup.

In Cleanups in My Community, you can map or list RCRA Corrective Action sites that are currently undergoing corrective action, sites for which a remedy has been selected, sites for which construction has been completed, and sites where the corrective action cleanup is complete (More on RCRA Corrective Action) .

Note: RCRA facilities which are not undergoing corrective action are not considered “Cleanups” in Cleanups in My Community. The complete set of RCRA facilities can be accessed via the RCRA database in Envirofacts.

Data

The RCRA data in CIMC comes from the RCRAInfo data stored in Envirofacts that have been flagged by states as both open to public access and on the Corrective Action 2020 Baseline. Data are updated monthly from RCRAInfo to Envirofacts, and then, on the 18th of each month, transferred to CIMC.  For more information, please see: 

Superfund

Superfund is a program administered by the EPA to locate, investigate, and clean up worst hazardous waste sites throughout the United States. EPA administers the Superfund program in cooperation with individual states and tribal governments. These sites include abandoned warehouses, manufacturing facilities, processing plants, and landfills - the key word here being abandoned.

Only those currently on the National Priority List (NPL) have been included in Cleanups in My Community thus far. In Cleanups in My Community we have used the term NPList because not everyone knows what NPL means and National Priority List is too long a title for the list in the list box. (More on Superfund)

NPList

EPA maintains a National Priority List (NPL), which identifies for the States and the public those sites or other releases that appear to warrant remedial (long term) actions. These NPL sites fall into the following categories:

  • Proposed: Sites may be proposed for the NPL and then may be placed on the NPL as final or be removed from the Proposed NPL.
  • Final: Those sites placed on the NPL are called "final," and for these sites, a cleanup remedy is selected and implemented. However, it may be several years after construction of the remedy is completed before the hazardous substances are completely cleaned up or controlled in place.
  • Deleted: After the cleanup process is complete, and appropriate reviews confirm the area is cleaned up or the hazards are controlled, sites can be deleted from the NPL.

Data

Superfund NPL data come to CIMC through two mechanisms.

  1. Information shown on the CIMC maps (including the latitudes and longitudes) and listed in the lists of sites, originates with the Superfund Enterprise Management System, but goes through additional Quality Control in EPA's Facility Registry System to:
    1. Ensure the latitudes and longitudes are within the proper ranges based on the county, state and other geographic identifiers provided for the site, and that the coordinates we use are supported by the best metadata we have available, and
    2. Integrate the data from the Superfund Enterprise Management System with data about the same sites from other EPA programs. We are continually in the process of improving this information, such as latitude and longitude information, which may not have method, accuracy and description information.
    For more information on the Superfund Enterprise Management System data in FRS and Envirofacts, please see the Envirofacts the Superfund Enterprise Management System page. For more information about the quality of the data in FRS, see the FRS home page, the FRS documentation and Programs Crosswalk.


  2. CIMC then links to the Site Progress Profiles in the the Superfund Public Use Database (SPUD). SPUD contains a selected set of “non-enforcement confidential” information and is updated by the regions every 90 days. These data describe what has happened at Superfund sites prior to this quarter (updated quarterly). For more information about the quality of the data in the Superfund Enterprise Management System, see the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Information System (CERCLIS) Quality Assurance Project Plan (PDF 29pp, 124K).  For more information on SPUD, please see the Superfund Site Information Search page.

Data in CIMC are updated on the 18th of each month.
 

Federal Facilities
Federal facilities are properties owned by the federal government. Federal facility sites can be either Superfund sites or RCRA Corrective Action sites, or they may have moved from one program to the other and back. In Cleanups in My Community, you can map or list any of these Federal Facility sites. Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) sites are also included in CIMC. (More on Federal Facilities)

Removals/Responses
Removals are hazardous substance releases that require immediate or short-term response actions. These are generally addressed under the Emergency Response program and are tracked centrally by the federal government's National Reporting Center. Cleanups in My Community maps and lists removals that are included in EPA’s epaosc.org site, and provides direct links to information on these sites. CIMC obtains updated removal data through a web service from epaosc.org around the 18th of each month.

Recovery Act Funded Cleanups
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act was signed into law by President Obama on February 17th, 2009. Out of the five EPA programs that distributed recovery act funding, three of them were cleanup programs: Brownfields, Superfund and Leaking Underground Storage Tanks. CIMC provides information on Superfund and Brownfields site cleanups that received ARRA Recovery Act funding, but not on the Leaking Underground Storage Tanks sites that received ARRA Recovery Act funding. Data for Brownfields comes from the ACRES database. Data for Superfund comes from the the Superfund Enterprise Management System database. Data in CIMC are updated on the 18th of each month. For information on all EPA Recovery Act funded work, please see: http://www.epa.gov/recovery/index.html and http://epamap17.epa.gov/arra/

Geography

You can search for sites in Cleanups in My Community based on the following types of geography:

  • Street Address – You can put in the street address, city, state, ZIP code (e.g. 123 Main Street, Arlington, VA) for any address in the US, and request a certain radius around it to define your geography of interest. Addresses are “geocoded” on the fly to find the best possible latitude and longitude on the map. CIMC uses geocoding services available through its Facility Registry System to locate the latitude and longitude of that address and then maps the area with the sites, or lists the sites in that area.
  • County, City or ZIP – Choose what type of geography you want to use, and then enter the name of the county or city or the ZIP code of interest. Be sure to specify the state in which the county, City or ZIP exists.
  • National – You can retrieve the whole country (including Alaska and Hawaii, etc.) or just the 48 contiguous states. Mapping or getting a listing for the whole country can be slow, so you may want to limit the types of sites in your search based on the categories above. If the site locations do not appear after the rest of the map has appeared, try refreshing the page.
  • Cleanup Name – You can enter the name of a specific cleanup (e.g., Port Washington) and the CIMC map will zoom in as much as possible to that location. In fact, to see the surrounding area of the cleanup, you will need to zoom out several levels. If you see a large section of the US when using the Cleanup Name option, it may be that there is more than one cleanup with that name. The Cleanup Name function will show the chosen cleanup(s) with a different site icon, so that it is distinguishable from the others.
  • FRS Registry ID – You will probably only use this if you are familiar with EPA’s Facility Registry System (FRS), but you can obtain the FRS Registry ID by finding the cleanup using the FRS search. Please see Cleanup Name above for information about zooming.
  • State or Territory – Choose a state or territory from the list of states and territories.
  • EPA Region – Select one of EPA’s 10 regions. For information on the geography covered by each region, as well as to access regional cleanup web pages, see the Cleanups Where You Live page.
  • Watershed – You can select the hydrological unit code, catalog unit name or sub-region name. Catalog units are also called watersheds. An explanation of these terms is provided on the USGS HUC page. Listings of these geographic areas are also available at the USGS website.
  • Tribal areas – We use the Tribal Boundaries from the EPA Map service (http://epamap5.epa.gov/ArcGIS/rest/services/EMEF/Tribal/MapServer) which "is built by combining boundaries from the 2010 Census American Indian/Alaska Native/Native Hawaiian Areas (AIANNH) data (visit http://www.census.gov/geo/www/tiger for details) with Federally recognized Tribal Entity Names as provided by EPA's Tribal Identification web service (found at http://www.exchangenetwork.net/data-exchange/epa-tribal-identification-tribes/ )".  To view the tribal areas disclaimer, please see our Legal Notices.
  • Latitude/Longitude – When you specify a specific point, and a radius around that point, the map will show that area and all the cleanups that appear on the map. The listing will include only those cleanups within the specified radius of that point. Site Names correspond to the names of cleanups in CIMC. Latitude and longitude need to be specified in decimal degrees.

    Please note that when you map cleanups, the map view will show all cleanups, including those outside the specified geography. When you list the cleanups, only those cleanups in the specified geography will be included. This is why a comparison of the cleanups mapped and those listed for the same geography will not be exactly the same.