Brownfield’s Tribal Response Program

Brownfield Definition

Brownfield is defined as real property, the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of which may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant.

Brownfield Capacity Development Grant

The purpose of the Brownfield’s Capacity Development Grant is provide funding to sustain, clean up, and restore communities and the ecological systems that support them by providing funding that increases the number of Brownfield response actions conducted and overseen by the Nez Perce Tribe Brownfield’s Program.
The objectives are to:

b Timely survey and inventory of Brownfield sites
s Oversight and enforcement authorities
s Provide meaningful public participation
s Approve cleanup plans and certify that cleanups are complete
s Maintain a Public Record of sites addressed by the program


The Nez Perce Tribe (Tribe) Water Resources Division is beginning its seventh year managing Section 128(a) Tribal Response funding to sustain, clean up, and restore communities and ecological systems. To date, our main Brownfield assessment accomplishments were the successful completion of two Targeted Brownfield Assessments (TBAs) in 2009-2010 that were funded by American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA): Richardson Sawmill in Orofino, ID and the American Legion Trap Range in Craigmont, ID.

In addition, the Tribe is awaiting Tribal Council direction regarding promulgation of draft environmental codes.  We need to balance the positive and negative effects of enacting the codes and make recommendations to Tribal Council to promulgate, modify, or reject the following draft codes:

• Environmental Protection Code
• Contaminated Site Cleanup Guidance
• Risk-Based Cleanup Guidance
• Soil Landfarming Guidance
• Guidance on the Proper Use of Liquid Storage Tanks on the Nez Perce Reservation
• Tribe Groundwater Protection Code

The Tribal Environmental Code and Guidance documents will provide a regulatory framework to approve cleanup plans and verify cleanups are completed. Our Environmental Code and Guidances are comparable to the Idaho Risk Evaluation Manual, which provides risk based corrective action procedures and standards to evaluate soil and groundwater contamination. The correlation between the Idaho and Tribal Codes should give Reservation communities confidence that the same standards are being applied both on and off Reservation and that the residents will be treated fairly.

What are “Tribal Brownfields”?

In general, contaminated on-Reservation properties may include:

s  Former gas stations
s  Mining sites
s  Mill sites
s  Dumps and junk yards
s  Wood treatment facilities
s  Oil and gas operations
s  Current/former industrial sites

Example of a  Brownfield Area:
Tribal Unit 45 /Richardson’s Sawmill

Potential Contaminates include

  1. Creosote contaminated soil and possible creosote groundwater contamination
  2. Underground Storage Tank (UST)
  3. Perchlorate contamination of groundwater from fireworks detonation
  4. Soil and possible groundwater contamination by pentachlorophenol of unknown origin.
  5. Uncharacterized “demolition debris”