I have to admit, I sometimes just don’t get it. It just plain baffles me when someone is willing to put hundreds of thousands of dollars, sometimes even millions of dollars, at risk to buy a piece of real estate, but then opts to rely on the conclusions and opinions contained in a ridiculously-low priced, slapped-together, cookie-cutter “assessment” report to satisfy the requirements of environmental due diligence.
Maybe they assume that if the report is acceptable to the bank, then it’s “good enough”. A very dangerous assumption… lenders have virtually no statutory environmental liability (see Lesson 6) and therefore can get away with accepting low quality environmental assessment work-product.
Or maybe it’s that people don’t fully understand the extent and ramifications of environmental liability… the risks associated with being required to pay for environmental investigation and cleanup by a governmental agency (statutory liability), the costs they can incur if they want to keep and use a contaminated property (practical liability), or the time and expense that a lawsuit for contamination-related damages might entail (civil liability).
So the purpose of this Environmental Due Diligence Boot Camp is to help people understand both the kinds of environmental liability risks they might face, and the due diligence process that is essential to avoiding or minimizing these risks.
It is true: You can’t trust the validity of information just because it has been posted to the Internet. So I’ve provided a brief summary of my professional background and credentials so that you can verify that the information I’m providing here is credible and accurate.
I’ve been conducting environmental due diligence assessments since 1983. I was fortunate enough to be around when the “new” environmental cleanup liability rules first went into effect, and was part of the relatively small group of environmental consultants that, in the 1980s, collaboratively developed the currently-used environmental assessment process.
I have completed many hundreds of environmental assessments for all types of real property: Industrial; commercial; residential; agricultural; public ownership.
I have reviewed hundreds of environmental assessments that were prepared by other consultants, have served many times as an expert witness in legal proceedings involving environmental contamination and associated fiscal responsibilities, participated in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's "all appropriate inquiries" rulemaking process, and have taught numerous workshops, seminars, and continuing education classes on environmental risks, liabilities, and due diligence.
The Bottom Line: I do know what I’m talking about, and what I’m providing on this Website is information that you can and should trust.
Still not sure ? Click HERE to review my Qualifications Summary