Cleaning Up Defense Installations: Issues and Options
CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE (U S CONGRESS) WASHINGTON DC
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Environmental contamination of thousands of military facilities is a costly legacy of the Cold War for which the nation is paying increasing costs. The Department of Defense DoD has spent about 11 billion on investigating, studying, and cleaning up contamination on military bases since 1984 and recently estimated that finishing the job could cost as much as 30 billion. In 1995, the Congress authorized the department to spend about 2.5 billion on environmental cleanup projects. According to current plans, the department expects to request another 2.6 billion in 1996. The current Administration has undertaken an ambitious, comprehensive plan to clean up defense installations in accordance with federal and state laws and regulations within the constraints of increasingly tight defense budgets. To date, the Congress has been able to authorize sufficient funding to meet DoDs requirements. Given the increasing costs of remediation, however, DoD may not be able to meet the requirements of its cleanup program on schedule and within budgetary projections. The DoD and the Congress could consider alternative approaches to the cleanup program to ensure that the departments most important cleanup requirements are met within increasingly constrained budgetary allowances. This Congressional Budget Office CBO paper describes the progress of DoDs cleanup program, examines its cost and budget history, and discusses current issues affecting the potential for successful implementation of future remediation efforts. The study also discusses near- and long-term strategies for meeting cleanup goals within cost constraints, should the current plan prove unachievable.
- Administration and Management
- Economics and Cost Analysis
- Logistics, Military Facilities and Supplies
- Environmental Health and Safety