Brookhaven National Laboratory
Response to the Bari Committee Report
May 1, 1997
On March 3, 1997, the Director of Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL)
appointed a committee to review the Laboratory's Environmental, Safety &
Health decision-making process and to make recommendations for the improvement
of the Lab's environmental, health and safety programs. The committee was
headed by Robert Bari, Chair of BNL's Department of Advanced Technology,
with members that included a representative from the Suffolk County Department
of Health Services.
The Committee's recommendations address the need for clearer management
roles and responsibilities at the Laboratory, improvements in how the existing
ranking system for environmental, health and safety programs is used, and
the benefits of instituting a comprehensive and proactive site-wide hazards
assessment and control system.
Brookhaven National Laboratory is prepared to aggressively act on the
Over the next several months we intend to take the following initiatives
to begin the process of elevating environment, health and safety issues
to the same level as the award-winning science for which the Laboratory
is world renowned.
- Foremost among AUI and BNL's responses to the Committee's report are
management changes, announced on Monday, April 28. The management appointments
are designed to form a team to manage the Laboratory with a new and intense
emphasis on integrating environmental, safety and health programs. Simultaneously,
Associated Universities, Inc. (AUI), the nonprofit research management
organization that operates BNL, is continuing to aggressively identify
candidates for the Laboratory's directorship.
- AUI and BNL will establish an external ES&H Management Improvement
Team, which will include representatives from other national laboratories
and industry. The team will provide overall guidance on strengthening organizational
and management structures required to achieve a fully integrated ES&H
- BNL will revitalize and reconstitute the ES&H Management Advisory
Group to include BNL senior managers and will invite representatives from
DOE, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Suffolk County
Department of Health Services, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
to participate. A communications plan will be designed to assure public
- The Management Advisory Group will review the process used to rank
environmental, health and safety programs at BNL, and restructure it as
necessary to assure that resources are used to address the highest-priority
areas and that no unacceptable risks are tolerated because of a lack of
- The roles and responsibilities of senior managers-- from the Laboratory
Director through every level of the management chain-- regarding ES&H
issues will be clearly defined. Each BNL employee will be held accountable
for identifying and preventing unsafe or inadequate work practices and
for taking whatever corrective actions are necessary.
- BNL senior management will commit to frequent interaction with the
Long Island community to ensure that they are fully aware of and responsive
to community concerns in the future.
The management and employees of BNL want to thank the Bari Committee
members for their efforts in compiling this Report. We welcome the recommendations
of the Bari Committee and will incorporate them into our immediate and long-term
plans to integrate environmental, safety and health into all our programs
and operations at the Laboratory.