October 17, 2008

Anyone concerned about the environmental condition of property now needs to consider the potential impacts and costs associated with vapor intrusion. Federal and state agencies are asking parties involved with investigation of contamination to begin screening soils and buildings for potential vapor impacts. The regulatory standards that are being applied vary by state. Many states, including Minnesota, are creating guidance documents that prescribe how vapor intrusion should be investigated and what steps should be taken to address vapor issues that are judged to pose a threat to the public. When vapors are found at sites that are being developed a barrier can be installed to protect building occupants. In cases where vapors are impacting existing buildings, other types of remediation, including active and passive venting, may be necessary.

The Minnesota State Bar Association’s (MSBA’s) Environmental, Natural Resources and Energy Law Section sponsored a one hour CLE on Thursday, December 4th in Minneapolis. Speakers included Jim Kelley from the Minnesota Department of Health, Ken Haberman from Landmark Environmental and Dan Holte of Braun Intertec. Hessian & McKasy  environmental lawyer Joseph Maternowski, who serves as the MSBA Section’s Vice Chair, helped organize the CLE.

Joseph Maternowski is an environmental attorney who chairs the Environmental Law Attorney Practice Group at the Hessian & McKasy firm in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

The views expressed here are my own and do not reflect the views of my employer, Hessian & McKasy P.A.

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