What is a Phase 1 Environmental SITE Assessment (ESA)

A phase one level environmental site assessment is done to provide information regarding the current or past uses of a commercial real estate transaction in regards to environmental concerns. The purpose is to determine if uses have effected the soil and or groundwater under the property and if that could be a threat to human health or to the environment.

Issues can pose a liability to the owner and/or to the lender as well as the value of the property.

Having a Phase 1 ESA completed prior to closure of the purchase can be used to satisfy the requirements of the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) innocent and owner defense. This is the initial step in the process of environmental due diligence.

The purpose a of Phase 1 Assessment is to determine if existing or potential environmental contaminations liabilities are present for a specific location.

The Phase 1 Professional conducts an assessment of the location and a review of records to determine likely evidence of environmental contamination. Findings are provided on a report that the buyer uses to protect their interests.

A Phase 1 ESA is not only for factories, businesses, or manufacturing types of buildings. These inspections are also done for multi-family properties such a larger building or a group of duplexes. 

Phase 1 ESA standards

There is a new standard for Phase 1 Assessments. Every 8 years, the standards are looked at, evaluated and updated to clear up any issues or ambiguous wording. The new standards were passed November 1, 2021. The new standards will be ASTM E 1527-21. The EPA will be reviewing the new standards and they should be approved sometime in the first quarter of 2022.

The new standards have not changed much. There is a requirement to research all four historical resources for the subject property that include aerial photos, topographic maps, fire insurance maps and city directories. This new standard will also apply to adjoining properties.

In addition to the extra requirements for the records search, there is to be more effort put into title searches. This does not fall to the Environmental Consultant, but to the purchaser of the property. This search is also to go back to 1980.

Environmental Consultants of Ohio have always performed their Phase 1 Assessments to the highest quality possible and this will be no different from what we have been doing.

Call us with confidence for your Phase 1 inspections.  937-896-3767

What is part of Indoor air quality?

Indoor air quality involves a myriad of things that make up the air that we breath. It ranges from humidity levels, and carbon dioxide (what we create from our breathing) all the way to molds, asbestos, formaldehyde, sewer gas and volatile organic compounds.

Some things found in the air can result in allergic symptoms all the way to cancers and organ damage. We have even tested apartment units to determine which tenant was breaking the lease rules by smoking.

We can conduct a "smoke test" to help determine locations of sewer gas leaks if they are escaping pipes and entering the building envelope. 

The first step in identifying potential causes of issues or to help prevent problems is to identify what is in the air and environment in which a person lives or occupies. For example, it is important to know if a material contains asbestos before a person begins to work on it or demolish it.  

We can test for the presence of active growth of molds, volatile organic compounds, asbestos, radon, hydrogen sulfide (sewer gas) and mold spores.

Not sure if it is something we can help with? Contact us so we can discuss and figure out if we can help or not. If we cannot help then we may be able to direct you to someone else who can.  Contact Page