The advent of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Superfund Program in 1980 marked a turning point for the environment and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The EPA turned to USACE to provide design and construction oversight of hazardous waste cleanups under the Superfund program.
With the passage of the 1986 Superfund Law, the Department of Defense formalized the Defense Environmental Restoration Program (DERP) for active installations, as well as Formerly Used Defense Sites (FUDS), and USACE districts began to execute environmental remediation work.
In 1991, as a result of the growth of environmental cleanup programs nationwide, HQ USACE decided that a centralized technical quality assurance function was needed using Missouri River Division technical staff, hence laying the foundation for the Center of Expertise concept. The CX was designated as the Radioactive and Mixed Waste CX in 1991. A year later, the name was changed to the Hazardous, Toxic and Radioactive Waste (HTRW) CX. This remained the CX’s official name until Nov. 11, 2007, when the CX merged with the U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville, Military Munitions CX, which was established in 1990, to form the Environmental and Munitions Center of Expertise (EM CX) with combined expertise in environmental, radioactive, munitions and munitions constituents remediation, response and compliance.
The EM CX is a diverse team of responsive, dedicated, innovative professionals supporting USACE, the Army and the nation’s challenging environmental and munitions response missions worldwide. We work with our customers to attain solutions that benefit and protect the public and the environment. At the EM CX, we actively support numerous programs, including the EPA Superfund program, the Army Installation Restoration Program, the Formerly Used Defense Sites Program, the Military Munitions Response Program (MMRP), the Formerly Utilized Sites Remedial Action Program (FUSRAP), the Defense and State Memorandum of Agreement Program and the HQ USACE Civil Works Compliance Program.
The EM CX provides support to HQ USACE and offices worldwide through independent technical reviews, quality assurance reviews, discipline-specific technical support, guidance development, participation on multi-agency panels and advisory committees, development and instruction of Proponent Sponsored Engineer Corps Training (PROSPECT) courses and informal training, and the evaluation of and recommendations on innovative technologies. The EM CX also provides environmental management assistance to HQ USACE for special studies and analyses.
The EM CX is not an execution organization. It is a mandatory center of expertise whose primary mission is quality assurance, technology transfer and lessons learned/ best practices. We support USACE offices worldwide in their execution of environmental and munitions response, restoration and compliance projects. The EM CX consists of a staff of approximately 70 in a wide array of areas listed in the text box. As a USACE mandatory CX, the EM CX is validated by the USACE ECOP in accordance with ER 1110-1- 8158 and is designated as the Compliance and Cleanup sub-COP.
As USACE environmental programs have evolved since creation of the organization, the EM CX has refocused to address near-term attainment of congressional goals for the Defense Environmental Restoration Program in achieving the Installation Restoration Program cleanup goals, shifting to performing five-year reviews and long-term maintenance of remedies, and subsequently ramping up military munitions investigation and cleanup. Two other areas of focus have become training, as well as achieving efficiencies for policy, guidance and implementation based on tri-services and interagency collaboration.
The Environmental and Munitions Center of Expertise is a one-stop center for environmental remediation, military munitions response and compliance needs.
To learn more, visit http://www.hnc.usace.army.mil/missions/environmental-and-munitions/
Download the EM CX fact sheet (PDF)
EM CX fact sheet
(as of September 2018)