Phase I, II, & III Audits
Environmental site assessments, or ESAs, have three phases. Depending on the results from the previous phase, the next one may or may not be necessary. Clean Management has compiled a breakdown of the Phase I, II, and III audits below.
How ESAs are performed?
Trained environmental professionals are necessary at every phase of an ESA to ensure that the assessment is compliant with all relevant federal, state, and local regulations. State and local laws may differ from those at the federal level, which makes having local knowledge of the legal landscape critical.
Companies conduct Phase I audits when there is the potential for site contamination. In addition to the physical site inspection, auditors review site records and interview property owners, residents, and any other party that has a direct connection to the site.
Thorough inspections take time, as government records can be detailed and the sources of contamination are not always straightforward. Trained auditors will be able to assess the origin of the contamination–if it exists–by completing a comprehensive review process in Phase I.
The Phase II audit builds upon the first stage. It includes a mandatory sampling of items that were mentioned in Phase I. Once samples are acquired, they will go to a laboratory for analysis. Their results will direct the course of action for the Phase III audit.
Phase II actions include, but are not limited to, testing the following areas of interest:
- Surface water and soil
- Underground storage facilities
- Trenches, drains, and basins
- Transformers (for PCBs)
- Waste drums
- Mold around or within the site
- Air around the site
The final stage in the ESA is the Phase III audit. Using the information from Phase II, auditors will determine the extent of the contamination and make a plan to remove or neutralize all of those hazardous substances.
While the plan is in progress, other auditors will complete more paperwork relating to the contamination and submit it to the proper authorities. Neglect of this step can result in hefty penalties.
To learn more about how Clean Management’s hazardous waste professionals can assist your business through the ESA process, reach out to one of our trained staff members today.