ASTM International is revising the ASTM E1527-05 Standard Practice for Environmental Site Assessments: Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Process which was designed to meet the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) All Appropriate Inquiry (AAI) requirement for environmental due diligence.
It is anticipated that the revised Standard will be published in Spring 2013 and referred to as ASTM E1527-13 which will also need to be approved by USEPA as meeting the AAI requirement. Dramatic changes to the Phase I ESA scope are not expected and many of the potential changes simply clarify language. However, several potential changes could impact how Phase I ESAs are approached or written. Here’s what you need to know:
- The Recognized Environmental Condition (REC) definition has been simplified and the Historical REC (HREC) has been revised. A potential new category of REC will need to be listed in the Findings Section of the Phase I ESA is the Controlled REC (CREC). The CREC addresses sites which received risk-based regulatory closure where residual impacts exist but no further remediation is required and the property is subject to activity and use limitations (AULs). A revised definition of AUL is also proposed.
- Vapor Migration is clarified as being included in the Phase I ESA with reference to ASTM E2600-10 Standard Guide for Vapor Encroachment Screening. The addition of the Migrate/Migration definition is also proposed.
- Explicit requirements for a review of regulatory files/records is proposed in a new Regulatory Agency File and Records Review subsection. If the environmental professional’s opinion is that a file review is not warranted, justification for this opinion must be provided in the Phase I ESA report. A summary of information from the file review shall be included in the Phase I ESA report.
- Revisions are proposed to the User Responsibilities (particularly requirements for surrounding environmental lien search) and Industrial/Manufacturing Properties sections as well as the Appendices.
If you have any questions or need a Phase I ESA conducted on your property, please Contact Us.