In December 2010, the California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal/EPA) convened a Asbestos Debris Task Force to address the challenges the State of California faces for removing hazardous materials, waste, and debris from commercial and residential areas during state and federal disaster response and recovery operations. The Task Force included members of the Air Resources Board (ARB), Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD), California Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES), Cal/EPA, California Air Pollution Controls Officers Association (CAPCOA), the Department of Resource, Recovery and Recycling (CalRecycle), Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC), State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB), and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA).
Previously, waste and debris removal from catastrophic incidents must be handled in accordance with the National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP). The Task Force sought to identify and agree on debris management options to address local, state, and federal regulations during a natural disaster or man-made incident. A sub-committee led by Cal/EPA and representatives from ARB, Cal/EPA, CalRecycle, and DTSC was formed to address the development of debris management guidance and protocols that would address the NESHAP regulations, while utilizing best management practices to maintain protection of human health and the environment.
This guidance document was created by the Task Force for conducting emergency hazardous material, waste, and debris removal actions under a local or state Proclamation of a State of Emergency.
Debris and Fire, Ash, and Burned Homes
- Safe Cleanup of Fire Ash (PDF). Guidance for handling ash during cleanup.
Asbestos Related Debris
- Asbestos May Be Present in Debris from Burned Homes and Businesses (Southern California Air Quality Management District)
- Dangers of Asbestos Following a Fire (PDF)
- Wildfire-damaged structure demolition/renovation activities reducing potential exposures to asbestos-containing materials (PDF)
- Handling ash, debris, and other hazardous materials from burned structures (English PDF)
- Handling ash, debris, and other hazardous materials from burned structures (Spanish PDF)
- Management Options for Expedited Collection of Hazardous Wastes from Burned Areas (English PDF)
- Management Options for Expedited Collection of Hazardous Wastes from Burned (Spanish PDF)
Proclamations of Local Health Emergency
- Proclamation of a local health emergency by a county health officer (San Bruno gas pipeline explosion San Mateo County(PDF)
- Orders of the health officer, San Bruno gas pipeline explosion San Mateo County (PDF)