Environmental Risk Management
At Harris & Lee Environmental Sciences, LLC, we undertake Environmental Risk Management using a graduated approach to discovering and properly managing environmental risk. The goal is to provide you with the required investigation to properly ascertain what risks exist and how to properly manage or mitigate them without engaging in unnecessary and expensive environmental work. Our comprehensive suite of Environmental Services covers all aspects of Environmental Due Diligence, Remediation, Process Design and Review and Training including:
- Desktop Review (DTR)
- Records Search with Risk Assessment (RSRA)
- Environmental Site Assessment (ESA)
- Phase I – All Appropriate Inquiry (AAI)
- Phase II – Investigation and Testing
- Phase III – Remediation
- Phase IV – Site Closure
- Small Business Administration (SBA) Environmental Requirements
- Preliminary Environmental Assessment (PEA)
- Project Management
- Review of Environmental Due Diligence Processes
The Desktop Review (DTR) is used as a screening tool to determine the likelihood that a given property has environmental issues that might put a lender or investor at risk. This is not a legal document and will not provide the legal protections obtainable from an All Appropriate Inquiry-Environmental Site Assessment, Phase 1 Investigation. The DTR process reviews regulatory databases and other information sources to arrive at an estimation of potential risk. A DTR consists of an Environmental Radius Map and Report with a written interpretation of that report.
Uses: Many banks and lenders use the DTR as a standard screening tool for all commercial financing.
The Records Search with Risk Assessment (RSRA) is a more comprehensive desktop report that meets SBA Lender and Development Company Loan Programs (SOP 50 10 (5)) Requirements for environmental due diligence. The RSRA augments the DTR with two historic reports that include a Sanborn and one other historic report such as a City Directories Report or a Historic Aerial Photography Report. As with the DTR, a written discussion of the data in these various reports is prepared by an Environmental Professional.
Uses: When SBA financing is involved or when historical property usage is of concern.
This report may be configured in various ways to suit individual client needs. The most common configuration is to use an Environmental Radius Map and Report together with a site inspection by an Environmental Professional with a report summarizing the findings. On occasion, the ESS may include an historic report such as a Sanborn Report and/or a set of Historic Aerial Photographs.
Uses: To confirm findings through on-site inspection or to inspect operational processes.
These reports are now in less use. However, they are done in compliance with the ASTM Standard Practice E 1528-06. These were formerly used by the SBA; however, since an Environmental Professional is not required under the ASTM Standard Practice the Transaction Screen is seldom required.
This is the classic Phase 1 (aka Environmental Site Assessment) that is now performed under the ASTM Standard Practice E 1527-05. This report, when properly performed, complies with the Federal CERCLA requirements 40 CFR Part 312; Title 42 the Public Health and Welfare, Chapter 103, Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, Subchapter I, Section 9601 and the State of California Health and Safety Code Sections 25395.60-25395.95. The AAI Report satisfies one of the requirements to qualify for the innocent landowner, contiguous property owner, or bona fide prospective purchaser limitations on CERCLA liability (the "landowner liability protections.") For more information regarding Phase 1’s, see Phase 1 – Environmental Site Assessments.
Uses: For all commercial real estate transactions. May be required for some forms of bank financing.
The Phase II (Phase 2) ESA is typically undertaken in response to recognized environmental conditions (REC) identified in the Phase I ESA or other environmental study for the purpose of providing sufficient information regarding the nature and extent of contamination to assist in making informed business decisions about the property; and where applicable, providing the level of knowledge necessary to satisfy the innocent purchaser defense under CERCLA. All our Phase II work follows ASTM E1903 - 97(2002) Standard Guide for Environmental Site Assessments: Phase II Environmental Site Assessment Process.
Uses: Undertaken to define impacts of RECs and determine appropriate actions.
The type of remediation needed will vary widely depending on the type of property and its configuration, the nature of the contaminant involved and the geologic conditions of the subsurface. Not only are there many “tried and true” remediation technologies available but there are also new and innovative technologies evolving continuously. It is the mission of Harris & Lee Environmental Sciences to apply the most cost-effective techniques available to try to resolve the issues on a property as quickly and as economically as possible. More
The Phase IV Closure activities involve on-going monitoring of the property to verify that the remediation has been successful and then the filing of a closure plan with the local lead agency. Therefore an important component of the Phase IV activity may involve representing the client’s interests with the lead regulatory agency. Proper representation can occasionally lead to an earlier closure provided a logical and technically accurate closure application is presented. It is the purpose of Harris & Lee Environmental Sciences to properly close an active site as soon as it is technically appropriate to do so.
Harris & Lee Environmental Sciences, LLC is experienced in the requirements and unique processes involved in meeting the Environmental Due Diligence requirements (Lender and Development Company Loan Programs (SOP 50 10 (5))) to secure SBA financing.
Uses: When SBA financing is anticipated.
The PEA process is a screening-level risk assessment approach conducted under the regulatory oversight of the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) of the California EPA. The approach involves a Phase 1 ESA, collection of samples on the impacted site under a DTSC-approved Work Plan, calculation of health risks and determination of site risk. Site Closure or Remediation then follows. Harris & Lee Environmental Sciences, LLC, is experienced in the PEA process and working with the DTSC. In particular, we have conducted PEAs for the Schools Site division of the DTSC and have worked with various school districts to obtain environmental clearance prior to school site acquisition or redevelopment.
When projects include numerous organizations – clients, consultants, regulatory agencies, financial institutions etc. - maintaining schedule, cost, scope and quality can be a challenge. Our Project Managers are certified Project Management Professionals and are experienced in managing large, complex projects to successful conclusions.
Our training services are tailored specifically to your needs – whether it is delivering a seminar on a specific topic such as SBA Lending Requirements or Environmental Due Diligence or developing a training regimen for your organization. Harris & Lee Environmental Sciences, LLC routinely provides seminars to those interested in learning more about any of our environmental risk management services. We have given numerous seminars tailored to the needs of banks, lenders, and property management firms. We are happy to tailor a seminar to your needs and schedule. Contact us for more information.
A repeatable, efficient and complete Environmental Due Diligence Process enables the Lender to make good financial decisions – both avoiding bad situations AND promoting transactions where the underlying Environmental Issues are understood and acceptable. We have worked with numerous Lenders to develop, enhance and/or implement cost-effective Environmental Due Diligence Processes. An initial review of your existing Environmental Due Diligence Processes is complimentary. Please email for details
Harris & Lee awarded "2009 Best Environmental Firm"
QUICK LINKSPhase 1 – AAIs (E-1527-05) Environmental Site Assessment
EH&S Professional Consulting
Environmental Due Diligence For Lenders/Banks
Harris & Lee Environmental Sciences, LLC
Based in Northern California with offices in Santa Rosa and San Francisco
Santa Rosa: (707) 571-8961