Damage Assessment & Restoration

Data collected in contaminant assessments is often used to secure compensation for resources lost or degraded by hazardous waste releases or spills. These efforts are part of the Natural Resource Damage Assessment and Restoration Program (Restoration Program). The Service also takes part, through contaminants identification, assessment, planning and restoration, in the Department of Interior's National Irrigation Water Quality Program (NIWQP).

Contaminant specialist are often called in by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), US Coast Guard, Department of Defense, or various other Federal or State agencies responsible for cleaning up a contaminated area, to ensure that fish and wildlife and their habitat are adequately protected during, and upon completion of, the cleanup. Contaminants specialists also work closely with National Wildlife Refuge managers to design and implement actions to cleanup oil and hazardous material on refuge lands.

Technical Support

Analyzing contaminant samples, and managing information are all key to the Contaminants Program's success. A large part of the Program's technical support comes from the Patuxent Analytical Control Facility (PACF), part of Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Laurel, Maryland. Staff at PACF are responsible for such things as overseeing all Service chemical analysis and managing the Environmental Contaminants Data Management System. This system is designed to electronically store, analyze, and create reports on the vast amount of analytical information obtained from fish and wildlife tissue samples collected by FWS biologists.

Santa Clara River Restoration Project

The restoration efforts for the Santa Clara River are the result of the Natural Resource Damage Assessment (NRDA) that was performed to assess natural resource injuries from the 1994 ARCO oil spill in the Santa Clara River, and to develop appropriate actions to restore the equivalent of the injured resources.

The various documents listed below will more fully describe the restoration efforts underway including land acquisition and the restoration projects grant program. Please view the files below for additional information.

Final Restoration Plan & Environmental Assessment for the Santa Clara River Arco Oil Spill
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