D. Kimbrough and T. Lesser

United States Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Public Affairs (P-19J), Superfund Community Involvement Section, 77 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, IL, 60604-3590, 312-886-9749 and 312-886-6685.


The term "Community Involvement" is the environmental catch phrase of the 90's. The commitment to keeping communities involved in the process of cleaning up hazardous waste sites has been important since the early 80's with the "lessons learned" at Love Canal, the canal that seeped huge quantities of poisonous chemicals onto a community in the City of Niagara Falls, New York.

The Superfund Program, under the jurisdiction of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), is committed to the timely and efficient identification and cleanup of hazardous materials spills and contaminated sites, with the ultimate goal of protecting human health.

For years, communities with culturally diverse populations have felt the lack of involvement and active participation in the decision making process for cleanup alternatives at hazardous waste sites.

This presentation will look at various communication tools and will highlight research on three Superfund sites with culturally diverse populations where the community involvement process really worked.

Implementation of the community involvement process consists of developing innovative approaches with the affected communities to ensure that the communities regard specific approaches as "meaningful participation."


community involvement, culturally diverse, Superfund

This paper is from the Proceedings of the 10th Annual Conference on Hazardous Waste Research 1995, published in hard copy and on the Web by the Great Plains/Rocky Mountain Hazardous Substance Research Center.