Publications: Environmental Law

  • Knock, Knock…Tips for Managing a Regulatory Inspection

    February 16, 2017

    Many state and federal regulatory agencies, including OSHA, EPA, and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, may inspect a business with or without advance notice to ensure compliance with applicable rules and regulations. Here are a few tips to help ensure that your inspections go smoothly. Before an inspection. As the saying goes, to be prepared is half the victory. Plan for an inspection before it occurs: conduct internal audits of compliance keep relevant documents organized e.g. permits, sampling data, compliance documents keep attorney-created documents separate, marked “privileged” create an inspection plan designate a facility contact and his/her backup identify where relevant records are located identify where...

  • Buyers, Owners and Lenders Take Note: HUD Adopts New Standards for Phase I Environmental Site Assessments

    April 23, 2014

    On April 16, 2014, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) published notice that it has adopted an updated standard for conducting the Phase I environmental site assessments required by the Office of Housing and Federal Housing Administration’s guidance documents. Those planning to buy or refinance property after May 16, 2014 or serve as a lender to real estate purchasers for property subject to HUD’s guidelines should be aware of the new requirement, outlined below. HUD Requires a Phase I Assessment: HUD requires all property proposed for use in its programs be free of hazardous materials, contamination, toxic chemicals and gasses,...

  • EPA Recommends Schools Replace PCB-Containing Fluorescent Fixtures

    January 6, 2011

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently set its sights on older fluorescent lighting fixtures as part of its effort to address exposure to PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls) in schools. If a school was built before 1979 or has not had a complete lighting retrofit since 1979, the EPA recommends replacing all PCB-containing fluorescent light ballasts. When a ballast breaks, PCBs leak and contribute to increased levels of the chemical in the air students breath. PCBs are toxic chemicals that can affect the immune system, nervous system and endocrine system, and they are potentially cancer causing. PCBs were widely used in electrical...

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