Site Assessment


GEC conducted a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment for a client looking to relocate its business to a property formerly operated as a trucking company. We found that the property was a State Disposal Site that achieved regulatory closure via a Class A-2 Response Action Outcome (RAO). As groundwater data was conspicuously absent from the RAO, GEC recommended groundwater sampling and found petroleum contamination related to historical releases. Because of our additional environmental assessments, the site achieved a proper regulatory closure, and our client secured financing. Additionally, our client was able to renegotiate the purchase price to reflect the true environmental liability and acquired the property.


GEC conducted a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment at an industrial property located within the boundaries of a Superfund Site. Our investigations enabled our client to secure funding to acquire and redevelop the property, and facilitated the purchase of an environmental insurance policy to guard against future environmental liabilities. The former brownfield property now operates as an active commercial lumberyard. 


GEC conducted a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment at a former dry cleaner and recommended soil and groundwater sampling to determine if historic chlorinated solvent use impacted the subsurface. Elevated levels of dry cleaning solvents were found beneath the building. GEC developed a scope of work and cost estimate for assessment and remediation. The lender used our cost estimate to establish an escrow account for environmental work, which enabled the property transaction to proceed prior to achieving regulatory closure for the solvent release.


Buying even a residential property can have potential liabilities. Our expertise helps avoid hidden pitfalls as in the following example: GEC conducted a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment and coordinated asbestos and lead-based paint testing for the prospective purchaser of a multi-unit residential building.  During our investigation, we identified two abandoned 20,000-gallon #2 fuel oil underground storage tanks (USTs). GEC recommended tank tightness testing to determine if the tanks were in good condition. Both tanks failed the tightness test and the client negotiated removal of the tanks prior to taking title to the property. 


GEC has conducted hundreds of Phase 1 assessments as well as more than 100 assessments pursuant to the EOEEA Land Acquisition Policy for Environmental Site Assessments on behalf of the Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation, the Division of Capital Asset Management, and the Division of Fish and Wildlife. We also led numerous land acquisition assessments for The Nature Conservancy. These properties range in size from less than one acre to more than 1,000 acres.


GEC completes Phase I Environmental Site Assessments for lenders considering foreclosures. We conduct surveys that evaluate asbestos-containing materials, lead-based paint, and mold in addition to completing all assessment activities within the scope of ASTM E1527-13 and All Appropriate Inquiry (AAI). When potential environmental liabilities are identified, GEC develops recommendations and maps out a plan of action to address the liabilities immediately following foreclosure so the property can be put back on the market quickly.