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EPA Proposes to Amend All Appropriate Inquiries Final Rule to Reference ASTM International’s E1527–13 Standard

A digest of the rule is extrapolated below:

On August 15, 2013, the EPA released a proposal to amend the Standards and Practices for All Appropriate Inquiries to reference a standard practice recently made available by ASTM International, a widely recognized standards development organization.

Specifically, EPA is proposing to amend the All Appropriate Inquiries Final Rule to reference ASTM International’s E1527–13 ‘‘Standard Practice for Environmental Site Assessments: Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Process’’ and allow for its use to satisfy the requirements for conducting all appropriate inquiries under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA).

The EPA is proposing this action because the Agency wants to provide additional flexibility for brownfields grant recipients or other entities that may benefit from the use of the ASTM E1527–13 standard. With today’s action, parties seeking liability relief under CERCLA’s landowner liability protections, as well as recipients of brownfields grants for conducting site assessments, will be considered to be in compliance with the requirements for all appropriate inquiries, if such parties comply with the procedures provided in the ASTM E1527–13, ‘‘Standard Practice for Environmental Site Assessments: Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Process.’’ EPA determined that it is reasonable to make this determination based upon the Agency’s finding that the ASTM E1527–13 standard is compliant with the All Appropriate Inquiries Final Rule.

The deadline for written comments to the EPA must be received by September 16, 2013.

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