United States: Your standard site EA can still skip the PFAS
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With all the attention given to PFAS over the past few years, you might assume that your standard environmental site assessment would assess the possibility that the property you are buying has been affected by PFAS, the “eternal chemicals” that are on the close to being federally regulated in parts per trillion (and are already regulated in such minute concentrations in many states).
But like In EPA reports, Because PFAS are not yet “hazardous substances” under federal law, the current ASTM standard for environmental site assessments does not cover them.
This means you need to make sure your site assessment professional adds PFAS to their scope of work.
Examples of properties where PFAS might be found include properties on or near properties where electroplating, semiconductor manufacturing, automotive manufacturing or recycling, waterproofing, stain resistance or box making has taken place, as well as any property to which fire fighting foam may have been applied.
According to Within the EPA, if the EPA’s schedule holds, that loophole will be partially closed this summer when the EPA approves the 2021 version of the site assessment standard, but prudent homeowners will still review the scope of work of their site assessors to make sure their EAs do what they think they are doing.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide on the subject. Specialist advice should be sought regarding your particular situation.
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