An environmental site assessment is a report prepared that identifies potential or existing environmental contamination liabilities for a subject real estate holding. The analysis, focuses on and addresses both the underlying land as well as physical improvements to the property. Some contaminated sites may be are brownfield, or previously used for industrial or commercial purposes. The land may be contaminated by hazardous waste or pollution, and has the potential to be reused once it is cleaned up. In cases with higher levels of contamination, brownfield sites may be added to the National Priorities List where they will be subject to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Superfund program.
There are both Phase I and Phase II environmental site assessments. Physical sampling of soil, air, groundwater and building materials is typically not conducted during a Phase I ESA. The Phase I ESA is the first step in the process of environmental investigation and due diligence. The Environmental Protection Agency has created standards for performing a Phase I site assessment and in 2013, anyone seeking to gain protection from CERCLA liability must complete an AAI-compliant Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA) using the new ASTM Standard E1527-13.
If a site is considered contaminated, a Phase II environmental site assessment may be conducted utilizing ASTM test E1903, a more detailed investigation involving chemical analysis for hazardous substances and/or petroleum hydrocarbons.
Working with an experienced consulting firm to properly complete your Phase I and Phase II environmental site assessments is critical to complying with current EPA requirements and successfully completing your real estate transaction. CAL INC has been a leading environmental consulting firm in Northern California for over 30 years, and has the experienced environmental consultants and engineers to successfully complete all aspects of both Phase I and Phase II environmental site assessments (ESA).
The Phase I ESA involves a review of records, a site inspection, and interviews with owners, occupants, neighbors and local government officials. While sampling and laboratory analysis are not always included in this phase, they should still be conducted by an environmental professional trained in the appropriate standards.
The review of government records and interviews may take a considerable amount of time. To ensure a quality assessment, it is important to plan ahead and ensure sufficient time has been allocated for the process.
Contamination can result from activities that took place on the site. Contamination could also come from activities at a nearby property. The records and interviews will be the best sources to provide this information. Public records are available regarding the locations of properties that have been classified as contaminated by federal or state regulations. Depending on their proximity to your site, contamination could have made its way to your site.
Should areas of concern be identified during a Phase I, CAL INC engineers will investigate any issues through a Phase II Environmental Site Assessment. A Phase II Environmental Site Assessment (ESA) is the second step in the process of ascertaining the environmental health of a specific property and whether it is in compliance with EPA standards and guidelines. If a site is considered contaminated based on the results of a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment, a more detailed Phase II ESA investigation should be undertaken, including a chemical analysis for hazardous substances. The Phase II Environmental Site Assessment is conducted on a site that has a potential spills, leaks, or may that be a facility that handles hazardous materials that has not maintained have complete and accurate records.
A Phase II ESA usually includes sampling of surface waters, groundwater, soils, and any potential hazardous materials on or off the property. Data from the samplings is compiled, assessed, and evaluated to determine the extent of the contamination on the site.
The goal of the Phase II ESA process which may include multiple field investigations and reports is to define the type, concentration, and size of the contamination and the affected media. Additional research and analysis may be necessary, like on nearby receptors wells to help define the type and speed of cleanup necessary at the site. A Phase II typically includes drilling at the site, collecting water and soil samples from the surface and at depth, and analyzing the samples for a range of chemicals which may be present at the site. The results of these activities are then compared to California clean up levels to determine the next appropriate step.
The All Appropriate Inquiry (AAI) is the new standard for Environmental Due Diligence. For your property transaction, you need an AAI compliant Phase I ESA. With over 30 years of environmental consulting experiences, CAL INC is the expert in providing Phase I and Phase II ESA support.
CAL INC's experienced environmental consultants and engineers also address other business risk including asbestos-containing material, lead-based paint, and wetlands. Our AAI compliant Phase I ESA still have the same four basic components including records review, site reconnaissance, interviews and a report. They also now address new Qualification requirements for Environmental Professionals performing Phase I ESAs.
We also conduct Phase II ESA in accordance with ASTM Standard E1903-11. We evaluate known releases or likely release areas identified by a Phase I ESA and assess the presence of likely presence of hazardous substances. Our Phase II ESAs are intended to develop and provide sound, scientifically valid data concerning actual site conditions.
To learn more about how CAL INC can assist you with your Phase I and Phase II ESA reporting requirements, call David Esparza today at (800) 359-4467
Located in Vacaville, CA, CAL INC provides Phase I and Phase II ESA reporting and consulting services to the Central and Northern California communities of Vacaville, Fairfield, Sacramento, Richmond, San Francisco, Vallejo, Woodland, Davis, Concord, Walnut Creek, Oakland, Fremont, Stockton, Modesto, Petaluma, Santa Rosa, Napa, Redding, Red Bluff, Eureka, Berkeley, Chico, Rio Vista, Antioch, Winters, Sebastapol, Novato, San Mateo, Palo Alto, Redwood City, Livermore, San Ramon, Dublin, Tracy, Calistoga, St. Helena, Marysville, Yuba City, Oroville, San Jose, Mountain View, Cupertino, Los Gatos, Sonoma, Martinez, Antioch, Rio Vista, Pinole, San Pablo, Alameda, San Leandro, Hayward, Castro Valley, Union City, Milpitas, Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Monterey, Burlingame, Rocklin, Roseville, Folsom , Rancho Cordova, Citrus Heights, Elk Grove, Galt, Lodi, Manteca, Tracy, Danville, Pleasanton, Merced, and the counties of Solano, Sacramento, Contra Costa, Alameda, Yolo, Mendocino, San Joaquin, Marin, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Stanislaus, El Dorado, Placer, Sutter, Yuba, Butte, Glenn, Lake, Tehama, and Shasta.