Environmental Restoration

Northwestern Division
Published May 16, 2012

The Northwestern Division has been a national leader in the restoration of Hazardous, Toxic and Radioactive Waste (HTRW) sites as well as munitions removal at formerly-used Department of Defense sites. The Kansas City, Omaha, and Seattle districts are responsible for cost-effective environmental studies, investigations and designs for site characterization and cleanup using leading-edge technology.

When the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (Superfund) was passed in 1980, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) asked for help from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to tackle some of the most highly-contaminated sites around the country. Because of its project management, technical, legal and contracting expertise, the Department of Defense assigned the Corps to clean up thousands of Formerly Used Defense Sites, including former Manhattan Project facilities. Work at active Air Force and Army installations followed as did projects for Tribal governments and various federal agencies.

Northwestern Division provides quality engineering and environmental services to federal, state and local governments on a cost-reimbursable basis. In the past five years, the Division has spent more than $2 billion on cleanup of hazardous, toxic, and radioactive waste sites in more than 40 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, and in several foreign countries.

Through its Interagency and International Services (IIS) program the Corps of Engineers provides technical assistance to non-Department of Defense (DoD) federal agencies, state and local governments, tribal nations, private U.S. firms, international organizations, and foreign governments. Most IIS work is funded on a reimbursable basis. The Corps provides engineering and construction services, environmental restoration and management services, research and development assistance, management of water and land related natural resources, relief and recovery work, and other management and technical services.

The Fiscal Year 2011 program for Environmental and International and Interagency Support combined was $870 million. The FY2012 program is projected to be about $694 million.

Areas of Expertise

Military-funded cleanup and prevention

  • Base Realignment and Closure
  • Defense Environmental Restoration Program
  • Formerly Used Defense Sites
  • Installation Restoration
  • Potentially Responsible Parties
  • Military Munitions Response
  • Building Demolition and Debris Removal

Environmental support for others

  • EPA Superfund program
  • Brownfields
  • Restoration of Abandoned Mine Lands

Innovative contracting and support services

  • Rapid Response
  • Pre-placed design and construction contracts
  • Hazardous waste disposal contracts
  • Site Characterization Analysis and Penetrometer System        
  • In-house drill crews
  • Performance-based contracting

Other services

  • Air quality modeling
  • Ammunition demolition area remediation
  • Archeological studies
  • Environmental law
  • Incineration facilities
  • Landfill caps
  • Mixed waste disposal
  • Ordnance and explosives removal
  • Pre-placed design and construction contracts
  • Radioactive waste disposal contracts
  • Sediment remediation
  • Subsurface monitoring well installation
  • Underground storage tank removal
  • Unexploded ordnance