Date of Award

1-2020

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

College/School

College of Science and Mathematics

Department/Program

Earth and Environmental Studies

Thesis Sponsor/Dissertation Chair/Project Chair

Pankaj Lal

Committee Member

Robert Taylor

Committee Member

Lisa Zilney

Committee Member

Jorge Berkowitz

Subject(s)

Hazardous waste site remediation--New Jersey, Hazardous waste site remediation--Privatization--New Jersey, Hazardous waste site remediation--Government policy--New Jersey

Abstract

In 2012, environmental remediations in the state of New Jersey were modified to proceed under the supervision of a Licensed Site Remediation Professional (LSRP), rather than under the management of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP). The LSRP program was set forth in the Site Remediation Reform Act (SRRA), which was established to accelerate the investigation and remediation of over 20,000 contaminated sites in the state. The program created major modifications to the management of site remediations by privatizing the process. Under the new program, a licensed individual from the private sector is designated as a LSRP, and can act as a remediation supervisor and provide oversight for remediation activities. These types of programs have already been employed by two nearby states into their environmental regulatory framework. The New Jersey LSRP program has been largely modeled after the Massachusetts Licensed Hazardous Waste Site Professional (LSP), a program that has been in practice since 1993.

The privatization of public environmental services has many variations, ranging from outsourcing portions of the remediation activities with the state maintaining full control over the remediation process to a large-scale privatized system that significantly lessens government’s direct involvement in the remediation process. This dissertation study undertook a systematic analysis of state-run programs to examine the states’ methodologies in determining the demands for a privatized system, determined the type of the privatization of a large-scale privatized system, and understand program impacts. This study determined that the greatest impacts have been the increases in the closure rates of contaminated properties in large populated cities. The study used a modified Strength Weakness Opportunities Threat – Analytical Hierarchy Process (SWOT-AHP) to identify the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of the New Jersey LSRP Program. The most significant areas of successes and needed improvements are acknowledged to assist in future strategic planning. Finally, the study identified acceptable conformance of the New Jersey LSRPs by verifying their commitments towards the strict codes of conduct by using the elements of the International Organization for Standardization 14001 audit process. The initial goal of the study was to assess how New Jersey’s privatization of their state-run remediation programs can help protect public health, safety, and the environment from known contaminants. The long-term goals may provide insights to policymakers, practitioners, researchers, and businesses alike on how a large-scale privatization process can help accomplish their specified goals in determining if privatized programs may be implemented within their states, or modifying their existing programs.

File Format

PDF

Available for download on Tuesday, August 11, 2020

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