New NR 700 Chapters Govern Financial Assurance Requirements that Apply at Certain Types of Sites with Contaminated Sediment

As of Oct. 1, 2021, two new chapters of the Wisconsin Administrative (Wis. Admin.) Code come into effect. The new chapters, NR 756 and NR 758, both relate to financial assurance requirements for certain types of contaminated sediment sites.

Ch. NR 756 – Financial Responsibility at Contaminated Sediment Sites with Engineering Controls

Responsible parties have choices on how to clean up sediment sites – they can remove the material, cap it all, or do a combination of removal and capping in place. This chapter applies to responsible parties who elect to use an engineering control – such as a cap – to control contaminated sediment, instead of conducting a full removal of the contaminated material. This chapter provides the DNR the option to request that the responsible party provides financial assurance for maintenance of the engineering control, and in the event the engineering control fails, for additional cleanup. In addition, if cleanup of sediment is impeded by a structure – for example a bridge abutment in a river prevents full removal of contaminated sediment – this chapter provides the DNR the option to require the responsible party to provide financial assurance for cleanup of the remaining sediment should the impediment be removed in the future.

Ch. NR 758 – Insurance and Financial Responsibility at Contaminated Sediment Sites in the Voluntary Party Liability Exemption Program

This chapter applies to persons in the Voluntary Party Liability Exemption Program (VPLE) who clean up contaminated sediment. It provides the DNR the option to require the voluntary party to provide financial assurance for the costs of future remedial action, to be used in the event the selected remedy fails.

These chapters initially went into effect as emergency rules in September 2020. Following publication in the September 2021 edition of the Wisconsin Register, both chapters are now in effect as permanent rules.

The DNR may develop guidance materials to assist the public in using these rule chapters. Before guidance becomes final, DNR will seek public input by posting a draft of the guidance to the Remediation & Redevelopment Program Public Notices web page.

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