Phase 1 Environmental Assessments
Due diligence for property transactions generally requires some type of environmental assessment to identify potential environmental liabilities. Typically, a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (“ESA”) is performed to identify recognized environmental conditions (“RECs”) on a property. A thorough Phase I ESA is essential in conducting all appropriate inquiries of a real property prior to a property transaction, which is needed to satisfy various liability protections under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (“CERCLA”). A Phase I ESA that does not include a detailed review of the property condition and history relative to potential sources of contamination could potentially jeopardize CERCLA landowner liability protection. With this in mind, Roberts routinely includes multiple Environmental Professionals (“EPs”) in the Phase I ESA process for every property, including the site reconnaissance portion. It is our sincere belief that EPs should be involved in all aspects of the Phase I ESA process, not just the report preparation and/or review. Keep in mind that the Phase I ESA is the foundation of your environmental liability protection, so the involvement of experienced personnel is essential throughout the entire process.
Certain clients do not seek liability protections under CERCLA or may need others types of data to support business environmental risk decisions. Roberts’ experienced personnel can develop a scope of work that is tailored to fit your needs.
Continuing obligations may also be required to maintain your environmental liability protection. Roberts can work with you and your stakeholders to develop a “continuing obligations plan” and develop/implement appropriate reasonable steps to minimize your environmental liabilities post-acquisition. This can also include comfort letters, site status letters, or no further action (“NFA”) letters from various State agencies when possible.
Roberts has completed numerous Phase I ESAs throughout the Midwest and many other states beyond. The scope of these assessments has ranged from small undeveloped properties to large industrial complexes completed as single-property transactions and multiple-property transactions.