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Funding for Meth Lab Clean-up. by C. Paul Rogers August 18, 2011. Quick introduction to meth labs What is a meth lab? What chemicals can be found at a meth lab? Why is a meth lab dangerous? Where are meth labs found?. What is a meth lab?

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Funding for meth lab clean up

Funding for Meth Lab Clean-up

by C. Paul Rogers

August 18, 2011

  • What is a meth lab?

    • A covert or secret illicit operation consisting of a sufficient combination of apparatus and chemicals that have been, or could be, used to produce methamphetamine.

  • What chemicals can be found at a meth lab?

    • Solvents- lighter fluid, acetone, white gas/camp fuel, alcohol, methanol, etc.

    • Corrosives- Lye, Liquid Plumber, Drano, hydrogen chloride gas, sulfuric acid

    • Reactive metals- Sodium, Potassium and Lithium

  • Why is a meth lab dangerous?

    • Solvents are generally very flammable.

    • Corrosives can burn the skin and mucas membranes.

    • Metals react with water.

    • Toxic gases generated during production (phosgene).

    • Toxins can penetrate drywall and other materials in the vicinity making the area a health hazard for some time if not properly handled.

    • Waste materials are often dumped near the lab site.

    • 5 pounds or more of hazardous waste generated for each pound of meth produced.

  • Cleaning up a meth lab

    • We are concerned with lab debris removal to include chemicals, lab equipment and containers.

      • Usually takes place upon law enforcements initial discovery.

      • Generally costs between $1,000 and $5,000 per lab.

    • Not discussing the remediation of a structure that has been used as a meth lab.

      • Removal of carpet, plumbing, curtains/drapes and dry wall.

      • No requirements or standards in Alabama.

      • EPA provided guidance in 2009.

  • Municipality material disposal?

    • May be appropriate when the incident is small.

    • Paperwork sometimes is just not worth it.

  • Local Law Enforcement and ABI Drug Task Force (MOU) material disposal?

    • Local law enforcement categorizes and segregates wastes and materials.

    • Transported to the ABI storage area.

    • ABI disposes of wastes and materials.

    • Only works if the local agency has an MOU with the ABI Drug task force prior to the lab discovery.

  • Local Government Reimbursement Program (LGR). material disposal?

    • In the event of a release (or threatened release) of hazardous substances, EPA may reimburse local governments for expenses related to the release and associated emergency response measures. The Local Governments Reimbursement (LGR) Program provides a "safety net" of up to $25,000 per incident to local governments that do not have funds available to pay for response actions.

  • LGR (cont). material disposal?

    • The program is defined in 40CFR Part 310

      • Eligibility

      • Requirements

  • LGR (cont). material disposal?

    • Eligibility

      • Must be a general purpose unit of government.

        • County, parish, city, town, township, municipality and federally recognized Indian Tribe

      • Must have legal jurisdiction over the incident site.

      • You cannot be the responsible party.

      • Substance released must be designated as hazardous under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA).

        • Does not cover petroleum products.

  • LGR (cont). material disposal?

    • Requirements

      • Reimbursement cannot supplant local funds normally provided for a response.

      • Cost recovery must be pursued prior to applying for reimbursement.

      • The application must be submitted to EPA within one year of the date of the response.

      • The application must be signed by the local government’s highest ranking official.

  • LGR (cont). material disposal?

    • $25,000 per incident

    • Pays for removal costs and disposal

    • Funds are available nationally

    • Funds are limited

  • LGR (cont). material disposal?

    • Application packet is 13 pages

      • Line by line instructions are included

      • Includes 5 main sections

        • Local Government identification

        • Release description

        • Response description

        • Cost information

        • Certifications and authorizations

      • There will be a need for additional documentation

        • Photos

        • Invoices

  • LGR (cont). material disposal?

    • EPA Region 4

      U.S. EPA-Region 4

      61 Forsyth Street

      Atlanta, GA 30365-3415

      (404) 562-9900

      (800) 241-1754


    • EPA’s LGR Helpline