What is a Phase I ESA, and do I need one?
The purpose of a Phase I ESA (Environmental Site Assessment) is to protect you from environmental liabilities and to identify problems before they become your responsibility. If you are purchasing a property it is essential to know that there are no underlying environmental problems with the site prior to purchase. Although some banks will require environmental due diligence, Phase I ESAs are essential if you wish to to keep your liabilities low.
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 lot of time. To ensure a quality assessment, allow sufficient time 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.
What is a Phase II ESA?
If a Phase I ESA identifies potential contamination of the site by hazardous materials, a Phase II ESA may be conducted. The Phase II ESA includes sampling and laboratory analysis to confirm the presence of hazardous materials. Some of the tests that may be performed include:
- surficial soil and water samples
- subsurface soil borings
- groundwater monitoring well installation, sampling, and analysis (may be appropriate on neighboring properties as well to determine the presence of contamination)
- drum sampling (if any were left on the property)
- sampling of dry wells, floor drains and catch basins
- transformer/capacitor sampling for Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs)
- geophysical testing for buried tanks and drums
- testing of underground storage tanks
Are you in need of a Phase I or Phase II ESA?
If you or your company are in need of a Phase I or Phase II ESA, or perhaps you are still unsure if an ESA is needed, please contact us now and we can discuss your project in detail. All information discussed will be kept confidential and handled with the utmost professionalism. Call us now at 859.813.2699 or email us by clicking the button below.