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EPA has established a permanent National Homeland Security Research Center (NHSRC) based in Cincinnati, Ohio. Water infrastructure protection will be one of the center's three main divisions.
Following the events of Sept. 11th, the NHSRC was initially created under a temporary charter to perform research and provide technical assistance for first responders and decision makers in a relatively short time frame.
NHSRC has been successful in addressing building decontamination, drinking water protection, and rapid risk assessment of airborne contaminants.
Since the temporary charter, EPA has been given increased responsibility by Homeland Security Presidential Directives and received requests for expert support by the Department of Homeland Security.
Due to these new responsibilities and continuing research and technology needs, EPA has decided to make the NHSRC a permanent organization.
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.
NHRSC will be organized into three divisions: threat and consequence assessment, decontamination and consequence management and water infrastructure protection.
As an example of the products produced, NHSRC developed a list of Standardized Analytical Methods (SAM) environmental laboratories can use to analyze biological and chemical samples. SAM provides a standard by which to measure specific types of contamination for state and local government laboratories that are preparing to analyze samples associated with homeland security event.
More information on NHRSC is available at: www.epa.gov/ordnhsrc/index.htm.