Technical Outreach Services for Communities

EPA Grant Number: R828770C001
Subproject: this is subproject number 001 , established and managed by the Center Director under grant R828770
(EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).

Center: HSRC (2001) - Midwest Hazardous Substance Research Center
Center Director: Banks, M. Katherine
Title: Technical Outreach Services for Communities
Investigators: Banks, M. Katherine , Voice, Thomas C. , Reddi, Lakshmi N.
Current Investigators: Banks, M. Katherine
Institution: Purdue University - Main Campus , Kansas State University , Michigan State University
Current Institution: Kansas State University , Michigan State University , Purdue University - Main Campus
EPA Project Officer: Lasat, Mitch
Project Period: October 1, 2001 through September 30, 2006
Project Amount: Refer to main center abstract for funding details.
RFA: Hazardous Substance Research Centers - HSRC (2001) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Hazardous Waste/Remediation , Land and Waste Management


The primary function of the Technical Outreach Services for Communities (TOSC) program is to bring university educational and technical resources to communities affected by hazardous substance contamination. This is based on the premise that an understanding of the underlying technical issues is a basic requirement for meaningful citizen participation in the decision-making process to address such problems. Universities are well-suited for carrying out this mission because of their technical expertise, research capabilities, and experience in providing similar extension services to communities.


During the course of the 2002 federal fiscal year, the Midwest HSRC will provide direct technical assistance to between five and ten communities (total) dealing with hazardous substance issues, in EPA Regions 5 and 7. A number of these communities will have received TOSC support under an earlier generation of Hazardous Substance Research Centers, and will continue to receive this support from the Midwest HSRC. The communities receiving technical support at any given time will be determined through a needs assessment process that includes input from the communities, EPA Regional officials, and the Midwest HSRC outreach advisory committee.

Specific technical assistance will be tailored to the needs of the community under an agreement developed between TOSC personnel and community representatives. Attention will normally be given to providing a base of fundamental scientific information, interpreting and summarizing reports, clarifying the regulatory process in general and as it relates to the site, addressing specific site contamination issues including extent of contamination, contaminant dynamics, exposure and health considerations, ecological considerations, and potential remediation technologies. Every effort will be made to select appropriate educational techniques including distribution of written material, public meetings, workshops, electronic tools, and local media involvement. A toll-free information line is also available for short consultation.

Supplemental Keywords:

Technical assistance, community support, hazardous waste contamination., RFA, Health, Scientific Discipline, Economic, Social, & Behavioral Science Research Program, Waste, Environmental Chemistry, Health Risk Assessment, Risk Assessments, Hazardous Waste, decision-making, Ecology and Ecosystems, Hazardous, Social Science, Economics & Decision Making, outreach material, contaminant transport, community involvement, contaminant dynamics, environmental decision making, decision making, community response to hazardous waste facility siting, community based environmental planning, human exposure, community participation, technical assistance, technology transfer, human health risk, technical outreach, community support

Progress and Final Reports:

  • 2002 Progress Report
  • 2003 Progress Report
  • 2004
  • 2005
  • Final

  • Main Center Abstract and Reports:

    R828770    HSRC (2001) - Midwest Hazardous Substance Research Center

    Subprojects under this Center: (EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).
    R828770C001 Technical Outreach Services for Communities
    R828770C002 Technical Outreach Services for Native American Communities
    R828770C003 Sustainable Remediation
    R828770C004 Incorporating Natural Attenuation Into Design and Management Strategies For Contaminated Sites
    R828770C005 Metals Removal by Constructed Wetlands
    R828770C006 Adaptation of Subsurface Microbial Biofilm Communities in Response to Chemical Stressors
    R828770C007 Dewatering, Remediation, and Evaluation of Dredged Sediments
    R828770C008 Interaction of Various Plant Species with Microbial PCB-Degraders in Contaminated Soils
    R828770C009 Microbial Indicators of Bioremediation Potential and Success