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Episode 10 – Connecting the Phase I to Long-Term Stewardship: ASTM’s Continuing Obligations Standard


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 E2790-20 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.

About the Speaker

Michael Sowinski, Vice President, Terradex
Mike Sowinski is the Vice President of Terradex. He brings nearly 25 years of engineering and legal experience on environmental cleanup and redevelopment, compliance, and pollution control, and is an expert in the niche area of institutional controls and cleanup site long-term stewardship, about which he has established himself as a national expert and thought leader.  Mike earned his BS and MS in civil and environmental engineering from the University of Maryland, and a JD from Vermont Law School. Among others things, Mike leads the ASTM Task Group that drafted E 2790, the Standard Guide for Continuing Obligations, and he co-authored “Revitalizing the Brownfields Revitalization and Environmental Restoration Act: Harmonizing the Liability Defense Language to Achieve Brownfield Restoration” published in the University of Virginia Environmental Law Journal.

About the Moderator:

Mary Ann Grena Manley, Founder and President, 15E Communications LLC
Mary Ann is the Founder and President of 15E Communications LLC, a Washington, DC-based consulting firm that assists clients with communications strategy, content, business development, and public relations. Prior to founding 15E in 2020, Mary Ann managed Bloomberg Industry Group’s coverage and analysis of global Environment, Health, Safety, and Sustainability issues for more than 20 years. With experiences cutting across environmental law, policy analysis, journalism, and marketing, she most recently served as Deputy Editorial Director for Bloomberg Environment. Her areas of policy expertise include environmental compliance, environmental due diligence, risk management, brownfields redevelopment, sustainability, and ESG.