Phase I Environmental Site Assessments (ESA)


Environmental Site Assessments are performed prior to property transfer or the closing of industrial and commercial real-estate transactions to determine if recognized environmental conditions exist on a subject property.


A Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA) is the standard for evaluating the environmental liability associated with a real estate asset.  A Phase I ESA is used to identify actual and potential environmental concerns and contamination at a site which may impact the property value or affect claim to an “innocent land owner” exemption following acquisition.


Our ESAs are completed in accordance with the most recent American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) Standard E 1527-13, Standard Practice for Environmental Site Assessment: Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Process.  This practice is the industry standard for conducting ESAs and is the basis for justifying due diligence satisfies the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) requirements for Landowner Liability Protections.


American Environmental Phase I ESA includes:

  • A review of historical and current environmental records and documentation pertaining to the Site, including review of Sanborn Insurance Maps, aerial photos and USGS 7.5′ topographical maps;

  • Regulatory records review, including Federal, State, Local and Tribal records concerning the property and the neighboring properties;

  • Performance of an on-site visit to view present conditions and evaluate any likely environmentally hazardous site history;

  • Evaluation of risks of neighboring properties upon the subject property;

  • Interview of persons knowledgeable regarding the property history (past owners, present owner, key site manager, present tenants, neighbors);

  • Professional report, including conclusions and recommendations concerning the property, based on our professional judgment and findings.



Phase II Environmental Site Assessments (ESA)


If the Phase I ESA indicates there is a potential for environmental impact, we can provide a Phase II ESA.  The Phase II ESA will evaluate the environmental impact and assess the nature and extent of the concern.  The Phase II Environmental Site Assessment determines whether suspect conditions identified during a Phase I ESA have impacted the environmental quality of a property.


A Phase II ESA normally entails collecting representative samples of surface stains, subsurface soils, soil vapor, groundwater, and/or building materials to properly characterize a potential source of contamination.  In-field screening is utilized for real-time analysis of soil and water samples and to identify additional locations for sampling.


The Phase II project may include:

  • Subsurface Soil Investigations

  • Groundwater Investigations

  • Service Station Investigations

  • Soil Vapor Investigations

  • Hydrogeologic Investigations

  • Monitoring Well Installation

  • Soil Boring Installations and Sampling

  • Contamination Assessment

  • Groundwater Modeling

  • Comprehensive Site Sampling Plans

  • Underground Storage Tanks (USTs) Investigation

  • Leach Pool / Underground Well Sampling


Our practical and cost-effective solutions to environmental risk are paramount in our approach to environmental due diligence. Whether a Phase I or Phase II Environmental Site Assessment (ESA), our team of environmental professionals provide a comprehensive range of services tailored to client needs. For the lender, our quick turnarounds and pragmatic approach insure a satisfactory closing. For the property owner, our subsurface investigations, remediation expertise and client advocate approach provide cost-effective solutions. Throughout the northwest, our environmental team has conducted hundreds of environmental site assessments. We have also successfully conducted remedial investigations and soil and groundwater remediation projects throughout the northwest.

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