SITE CLEAN UPS
→ Remediation Required by Regulation or Pursuant to PA Act 2
→ Underground Storage Tanks (USTs)
→ Remedial Cost Allocation Disputes
Site contamination frequently reflects historic leakage of oils and chemicals from industrial equipment and underground storage tanks, as well as residual from degreasing and surface coating processes. In some facilities continuing site impact from current operations is easily discernable by site inspection, and there is often a history of state agency enforcement action, some of which may be still be unresolved. At other properties, historic industrial operations are covered by a warehouse or office structure, or paved open space, and the site may have evolved to commercial use. In such situations, the need for remediation is often revealed by thorough Environmental Due Diligence and/or new construction activity.
In order to maximize the value-added for remedial action, Environmental counsel assists clients in negotiating a reasonable scope of work and obtaining eventual Pennsylvania Act 2 Program Approval with accompanying Liability Release, in addition to final resolution of any pending enforcement issues.
The property owner is usually strictly liable for necessary site investigation and remediation. This can easily run to several hundred thousand dollars or more. However the owner may also have “remedial cost allocation” claims under federal and state law against current tenants, previous tenants, or previous owners, who contributed to site conditions. Environmental counsel can attempt to resolve such disputes in a timely manner via negotiation or mediation, or by initiation of litigation when necessary.
State agencies occasionally threaten enforcement action upon learning of site contamination. However, the incentive for site remediation is more often the minimization of real estate asset devaluation, and satisfaction of underwriting concerns of a lender or insurance carrier.