Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA)
BrightFields’ Phase I ESAs are typically completed for commercial, industrial, or agricultural real estate transactions, financing requirements, and/or grant applications. The Phase I ESA is often the first “phase” or “step” of an environmental investigation and is performed to identify if Recognized Environmental Conditions (RECs) exist. Our work scope consists of a site inspection, interviews, historical research, regulatory database review, and report. BrightFields’ Phase I ESAs are prepared in accordance with the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) Standard Practice for Phase I Environmental Site Assessments (ASTM E 1527-13).
The ASTM Phase I ESA Standard was written to provide an acceptable, industry-wide method for conducting Phase I ESAs, which satisfy the due diligence requirement of the innocent landowner defense to CERCLA liability. In addition, the EPA has determined that a Phase I ESA completed to the ASTM E 1527-13 Standard is in full compliance with the requirements for conducting All Appropriate Inquiry (specified in EPA’s AAI Rule (40 CFR Part 312)).
All of BrightFields’ personnel who perform Phase I ESAs meet the definition of an “Environmental Professional” per the ASTM Phase I ESA Standard. Their experience in completing Phase I ESAs ranges from seven to twenty-three years. BrightFields prepares approximately 100 Phase I ESAs per year for clients including buyers, sellers, attorneys, developers, and lending institutions.
Our sound and proven approach to Phase I ESAs has gained BrightFields an excellent reputation with both our clients and regulatory agencies. BrightFields’ Phase I ESAs are respectful of client confidentiality and sensitive to timelines for property transactions, causing minimal disruption to site operations. When RECs are identified while performing the Phase I ESA, it is BrightFields’ policy to notify the client as soon as it is practical. This allows time to address some of the concerns quickly, in case additional investigation involving sampling may be needed to delineate the problems. Likewise, when an environmental liability or evidence of a reportable release is noted during a Phase I ESA, the client is notified promptly in order to keep them out of trouble.
Preliminary Environmental Assessment (PEA)
BrightFields’ PEAs are typically used to conduct limited investigation of commercial properties as a cost effective screening tool to evaluate if further inquiry or action is needed, such as the more comprehensive Phase I ESA. The goal of the PEA is to identify Potential Environmental Concerns (PECs). A PEA consists of a site inspection, limited interviews and historical research, regulatory database review and a checklist/letter report. BrightFields’ PEAs are formatted to incorporate ASTM’s Standard Practice for Limited Environmental Due Diligence: Transaction Screen (ASTM E 1528-14).