Epa Sets Up Permanent Homeland Security Research Center
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has established a permanent National Homeland Security Research Center, based in Cincinnati.
The permanent staff of the center will increase to 50 scientists, engineers and support personnel located in EPA facilities in Cincinnati, Ohio, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina and Washington, DC.
The agency’s Homeland Security Research function will be restructured from the original temporary charter into three divisions–threat and consequence assessment, decontamination and consequence management, and water infrastructure protection.
The permanent center will enable design, implementation and oversight of the research and provide clear lines of communication and facilitate interaction within EPA and with other federal agencies, universities, and private sector and research partners, the agency said Wednesday.
“This action enables EPA to continue to provide the scientific expertise, advice and guidance on homeland security issues to emergency personnel, decision makers and government officials that will result in improved protection for all citizens,” said Dr. Paul Gilman, EPA science advisor and assistant administrator for research and development.
EPA’s National Homeland Security Research Center (NHSRC) was formed on February 4, 2003, to manage, coordinate and support a wide variety of homeland security research and technical assistance efforts assigned to EPA in the wake of the World Trade Center and Capitol Hill anthrax terrorist attacks.
The NHSRC was given an initial charter through October 2005 with the understanding that the need for the center would be re-examined prior to the charter’s expiration.
The center’s original objective was to produce useful methods, models, and guidance documents for first responders and decision makers in a relatively short time frame.
Since then, the EPA has been given increased responsibility by a number of Homeland Security Presidential Directives and received requests for expert support by the Department of Homeland Security.