Hazardous Waste:

DOD Installations in Guam Having Difficulty Complying With Regulations

NSIAD-87-87: Published: Apr 22, 1987. Publicly Released: Jul 9, 1987.

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In response to a congressional request, GAO evaluated the Department of Defense's (DOD) efforts to manage, store, and dispose of the hazardous waste generated at installations in Guam.

GAO found that: (1) DOD installations in Guam were not in compliance with the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act's requirements; (2) most of the violations were serious, and many were repetitive; (3) the most common violation involved inadequate pretransport packaging and labeling measures and improper container use and management; (4) there were many instances where maintenance activities had improperly dumped or spilled hazardous waste which ran off into storm drains and dry wells; (5) there were significant discrepancies in the shipping and receiving numbers on manifests; (6) the lack of adherence to procedures caused problems in accounting for all hazardous wastes; and (7) DOD had not reconciled any of the discrepancies found in its disposal documents.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: A study team is investigating the situation at the bases in Guam to determine what actions are needed. This work is continuing.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct Air Force and Navy officials in Guam to take actions to ensure that all personnel handling hazardous waste know the proper procedures for disposing of the waste so as to eliminate the dumping of wastes in ways that could contaminate the environment.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: A study team is investigating the situation at the bases in Guam to determine what actions are needed. This work is continuing.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense should direct the Defense Reutilization and Marketing Office in Guam to place more emphasis on its procedures for reconciling discrepancies between what is listed on each disposal document for hazardous waste, including delivery orders, pickup orders, manifests, and the Integrated Disposal Management System.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense

 

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