Maryland's Voluntary Cleanup Program

Background

The Voluntary Cleanup Program (VCP) was established by the state legislature in 1997 and is administered by the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) Land and Materials Administration's Land Restoration Program (LMA-LRP) to provide State oversight for the voluntary cleanup of properties contaminated with hazardous substances. The goal of the program is to increase the number of sites cleaned by streamlining the cleanup process while ensuring compliance with existing environmental regulations.

A Memorandum of Agreement was signed by MDE and the Environmental Protection Agency Region III to facilitate the voluntary cleanup and redevelopment of contaminated properties. The agreement addresses federal liability of a participant in Maryland’s voluntary program by providing that EPA will consider sites (in Maryland’s program) of no interest. Eligible properties in Maryland’s VCP will fall under this agreement once a No Further Requirements Determination or Certificate of Completion has been issued for the property by MDE. Limited circumstances under which the agreement would not apply are also outlined. This agreement increases certainty for program participants.
 

Fee Waiver for Renewable Energy Siting and Development  

On November 23, 2021, the Secretary of the Environment adopted regulations that establish criteria for determining whether a Voluntary Cleanup Program applicant has certified their intention to use an eligible property to generate clean or renewable energy, qualifying the applicant for an application fee waiver. The adopted regulations are expected to affect commercial and residential developers, environmental consultants, and clean and renewable energy companies interested in participating in the Voluntary Cleanup Program. ​Additional information on the new regulations is available on the ​ Renewable Energy Siting and Development​ webpage.

Legislation

Maryland legislation has modified certain requirements for redevelopment through the VCP since inception. These changes became effective October 1, 2004. A summary of changes is listed below:

  • Allows oil contaminated sites and sites under active enforcement under specified conditions to be eligible for the VCP
  • Increases predictability and efficiencies
  • Increases public notification of cleanups; and
  • Clarifies liability provisions
  • Broadens eligibility for grants and loans administered through the Brownfields Redevelopment Initiative Program (BRIP)


VCP Public Notice Requirements 

Upon submission of an application to the VCP, the applicant shall post notice at the property that is the subject of the application. The Department maintains a current VCP Application list.  
 


VCP Guidance Fact Sheets​

Additional VCP Information

Contact Information

Please email or call the Voluntary Cleanup Program at 410-537-3493. ​​

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