Environmental assessments of reclaimed land in the United States of America

M. Leonard, K. Privett

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


United States law, both federal and state, requires environmental assessments of certain industrial establishments prior to the close of transfer to a new owner. If a site is to be reclaimed it is the current owners responsibility to prove to the satisfaction of the authorities that it is clean. One of four major phases of study that must be undertaken is the Remedial Investigation Feasibility Study which includes gathering site data and assessing the feasibility of different remedial actions. For sites that are on the Superfund list there are rigorous procedures defined by the United States EPA. The investigation work for a large site may take years to complete and cost several million dollars. Site assessment for property transfers are on a much lower scale (but can lead to the discovery of contamination sufficient to place the site on the Superfund list). There are no detailed guidelines and current practice has evolved a three tier level of assessment necessary to address the issue of how much investigation is enough. These three levels are the Screening Phase, Environmental Assessment and In Depth Environmental Assessment. Given the ever increasing environmental liabilities, it is vital that Environmental Assessments are carried out by suitably qualified professionals to very high standards of care, compared to more traditional forms of site investigation.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationLand Reclamation
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)1-85166-658-3
Publication statusPublished - 1991


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