Episode 14 – Whiplash: Navigating WOTUS and the Sackett Decision
The very definition of “waters of the United States,” or WOTUS, under the Clean Water Act, has been the subject of extensive litigation and controversy for decades. Join Mary Ann Grena Manley, Founder and President of 15E Communications, and Rafe Petersen, a partner in the Washington, D.C., office of Holland & Knight, for an in-depth conversation as they explore the current WOTUS rule and its regulatory history. They also discuss the significance of the recent Supreme Court ruling in Sackett v. Environmental Protection Agency, its impact on regulatory requirements, and implications for land development, pending transactions, and environmental due diligence.
First in our Lender Series…
ERIS’ Dave Colonna, Director of Lender Services, speaks with John Rybak, Senior Vice President, Environmental Risk Manager, Truist Financial. John shares his views on managing risk, planning during uncertain economic times, and what steps can be taken to address slowdowns. The discussion outlines the differences between what’s happening now compared to during the mortgage crisis of 2008/9, and during the pandemic of 2020. From departmental implications and considerations to wider industry observations, the discussion covers much ground and provides thoughtful insights from an industry veteran.
Environmental justice is a hot topic at the state and federal level, with emerging policies affecting everything from permitting decisions to company acquisitions and real estate transactions. Join Mary Ann Grena Manley, Founder and President of 15E Communications, and guest Matthew Karmel, Chair of the Environmental and Sustainability Law Group of Offit Kurman, for a conversation about recent policy and regulatory developments in environmental justice and practical impacts for environmental professionals. Discussion items include the intersection of EJ policy and energy policy, what states are leading the way on EJ issues, and how these regulatory changes affect specific projects.
Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors and mega-economic trends are transforming the commercial real estate market and impacting brownfields redevelopment. Join Mary Ann Grena Manley, Founder and President, 15E Communications, and guest Dan French, Founder & Principal of dbForesites and President of Brightfield Productions, for a lively discussion about how global factors and ESG are influencing public and private investment in infrastructure, real estate, and beyond. Critical discussion items include the importance of identifying all risks in CRE portfolios that have financial consequences and preparing for the wealth of new opportunities emerging as the transition to the green economy takes shape and worldwide markets shift.
Although ASTM's Standard Guide for Identifying and Complying with Continuing Obligations (E2790-20) doesn't get the star treatment the Phase I standard enjoys, it plays a critical role in the environmental due diligence continuum, kicking in for property owners who acquire contaminated sites. Often, these are properties purchased for redevelopment. For parties looking to ensure liability protections under federal law (CERCLA) or state law, or to ensure they’re following best practices for general risk management for contaminated properties, the guide is a critical post-acquisition implementing tool. Notably, the first step the user takes under E2790 is to review the site’s Phase I report. Join Mary Ann Grena Manley, Founder and President, 15E Communications, and guest Mike Sowinski, Vice President, Terradex, for an enlightening conversation about ASTM's standard guide for land stewardship.
This is important and must-know information. Among the many changes, the new standard provides more guidance about the extent of historical research needed, and specifically, when it comes to identifying Environmental Liens or Activity and Use Limitations – AULs. The new standard seeks to improve the accuracy of report conclusions by specifying that title records must be researched back to 1980. But how will this translate to how EPs conduct Phase Is for their clients? Join Jeff Doerner, Senior VP at ERIS, and his guest David Mitchell from AFX Research. As President of AFX Research, and as a member of the advisory sub-committee focusing on liens for the E1527-21, David is in a unique position to discuss the lay of the land, the upside and downside that will affect practitioners and clients alike.
The commercial real estate market is booming! Certain trends and drivers of change continue to fuel robust transactional and redevelopment activity, including the adaptive reuse of CRE, which gives older structures and spaces new life and purpose. Guest host Mary Ann Grena Manley welcomes guest Mark Johnson, a Principal Consultant with Geosyntec, based in the company’s Wilmington, NC office, to discuss these evolving trends as well as the impact of emerging environmental justice policies and ESG factors on environmental due diligence and project planning. Mark also offers practical tips for parties involved in adaptive reuse and brownfields redevelopment projects.
Environmental justice (EJ) has become a force of change in our industry with major implications for developers and investors. While every state has some kind of EJ policy, New Jersey’s new landmark legislation is the first of its kind with real teeth and its implementation will be closely watched by various stakeholders. Guest host Mary Ann Grena Manley welcomes guest New Jersey environmental attorney Matt Karmel with Riker Danzig Scherer Hyland & Perretti LLP, to explain the nuts and bolts of the new law, what industries it will impact, and its broader implications for businesses and projects nationwide.
Guest Kevin Drover of Stantec Consulting Ltd speaks with host Brayden Ford about the development of drones for environmental property due diligence. Kevin oversees an international group whose specific role is to apply unmanned aerial vehicle technology for the expansion of site research and monitoring.
Guest Derek Ezovski explains how the lender landscape is impacting environmental due diligence practices. Derek and Jeff also give insight into SBA standard operating policies, the RSRA (Records Search Risk Assessment) and ASTM standards within the due diligence framework.
Want to make better technical reports (with less effort)? Kelly Stratton knows how. After years of report writing as an environmental professional Kelly launched technical report writing platform Quire specifically to help clients produce better reports more easily. Kelly outlines six ways you can improve your reports in a conversation that will be help anyone who writes technical reports as part of their responsibilities.
Not all Phase I reports are created equal. And some are downright dangerous. Phase Is are a common and necessary first-step in many environmental professionals' due diligence workflow. In this discussion, Brayden Ford and his expert guest, Bill Leedham, give you clear best practice advice for Phase I research reports. They cover not only best practices but some common (and costly) mistakes, lurking dangers, and the limitations placed on the fulfillment of this important first step.
Guest Julie Kilgore dives deeper with us into potential ASTM revisions. Find out what big changes for users and property due diligence professionals could be underway.
Guest Julie Kilgore outlines potential ASTM revisions and explains why they could mean big changes for users and environmental professionals.