to determine precise resource requirements and finalize roles and responsibilities.”2

Although the USD’s tasking was specific to the recovery and destruction of buried CWM, the Secretary of the Army’s report addressed all situations involving the recovery and destruction of buried CWM, regardless of the circumstances of recovery, and expanded the scope of the plan to provide a comprehensive approach for addressing RCWM, including unexploded ordnance and other materials of interest, such as munitions that have unknown liquid fill and chemical agent identification sets (CAIS).

The plan was developed by a buried CWM integrated product team (IPT) and an overarching integrated product team (OIPT) formed by the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army (Environment, Safety and Occupational Health [DASA(ESOH)]) with representatives from his office, the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army (Elimination of Chemical Weapons) [DASA(ECW)], the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management (ACSIM), the Army G-3, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), the Chemical Materials Agency (CMA), CMA’s Non-Stockpile Chemical Materiel Project (NSCMP), and the U.S. Army’s Forces Command (FORSCOM) 20th Support Command (CBRNE). It states, in part, as follows:

During this plan’s development the need for an Executive Agent (EA) for the RCWM program was made clear. Multiple agencies are currently responsible for various aspects of a response that involves or potentially involves CWM (e.g., planning, budgeting, execution). The agencies have independently developed costs for various aspects of the RCWM program. These estimates have been highly variable.… An integrated approach is needed to address these issues. The designation of an EA with responsibility for ensuring an integrated consistent approach to the oversight and management of all aspects of the RCWM is recommended.

The IPT made almost a dozen determinations:

a.  The assignment of EA responsibility to the Army would provide the DOD with visibility for total requirements and an integrated consistent approach for addressing (1) the RCWM aspects of responses conducted at DERP-funded munitions response sites (MRS); (2) range clearance and other activities conducted on operational ranges where CWM material is known or suspected to be present, or where it is encountered; and (3) explosives or munitions emergency response where a munition with an unknown liquid fill or CWM is encountered.

b.  The scope of the EA’s responsibilities and the RCWM program should be broadened to make the EA responsible for the support of all circumstances that could involve RCWM including: addressing the discovery and assessment of munitions with unknown liquid fills; UXO determined to be chemical-filled munitions; CWM commingled with conventional munitions; and providing an approach for addressing CWM on operational ranges and other areas that are outside the DERP.

c.  Overall, the RCWM program should be managed as part of DOD’s Installations and Environment (I&E) program, not as an acquisition program. In addressing CWM recovered under a variety of situations (e.g., during munitions response on active, BRAC, and FUDS properties, during range clearance activities, and during explosives and munitions emergencies) multiple funding sources might be involved.

d.  Planning and management of CWM responses should remain integrated with the Service I&E programs, not managed as a separate program.

e.  RCWM should be handled as nonsurety material.

f.  The roles and responsibilities for compliance with the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) were not expected to change should the Army be made EA for the RCWM program.

g.  NSCMP’s equipment and associated personnel for assessment of recovered munitions and destruction of RCWM personnel should transition from the NSCMP-managed acquisition-related program to an Army operational activity.

h.  Any estimate for the RCWM program’s total estimated cost should include specific funds to support:

•  NSCMP’s sustainment of operational crews, staff, and equipment.

•  Research, development, test and evaluation (RDT&E) required to support the RCWM program.

•  Necessary archival research.

•  The U.S. Army Forces Command (FORSCOM) 20th Support Command (Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear and High Yield Explosives) (CBRNE)’s two chemical battalions [Technical Escort (TE)] (formerly U.S. Army Material Command’s Technical Escort Unit) support of explosive and munitions emergency responses.

i.  Funding and management of CWM responses should be consolidated to the extent practical. However, separate funding—a separate appropriation—should be established for those activities collectively referred to as emergency.

j.  I&E programs of the respective Services should continue to prioritize, plan, and fund CWM response actions, less assessment and destruction; and should coordinate with the EA to obtain prioritization based on Defense-wide needs and to ensure that assessment and destruction requirements can be met.


2RCWM Plan 2007.

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