Real Estate Development of Contaminated Property

Buying and Selling Contaminated or Potentially Contaminated Property

Purchasing or selling contaminated properties can be a complex process and the attorneys at Houston Harbaugh, P.C., in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania have experience in assessing the environmental risks and benefits of these transactions. When our clients consider redeveloping a property, we ensure that the appropriate risk management tools and governmental incentives are used for the best protection and benefit.

Both buyers and sellers of contaminated or potentially contaminated property must conduct appropriate environmental due diligence to determine the extent of or potential extent of contamination at a property.We consider issues such as who will remain responsible for the contaminated property, whether any environmental regulatory defenses may apply, and whether there are any governmental incentives that may be beneficial to invoke. We are experienced in drafting and reviewing purchase and sale documents to ensure that our clients' interests are appropriately protected.

Permit Transfers

In addition, our lawyers are also experienced in assisting in transitions between owners or operators of permitted facilities or sites. We have assisted in transferring permits between current and new owners and can also reevaluate a company's regulatory compliance during the transfer to ensure that the facility is operating with appropriate permits and authorizations. Our goal is for the transfer of ownership to be conducted as efficiently as possible.

  • Representing a remediation contractor in a multi-party, multi-faceted litigation arising from a fly ash land slide that impacted a residential neighborhood.
  • Representing a waste and recycled oil recovery transporter in Superfund litigation arising out of the cleanup of a waste oil recovery facility.
  • The representation of a waste disposal company in various regulatory and permitting matters, including litigation arising out of permitting and civil penalty actions.
  • The representation of a major chemical manufacturer concerning several hazardous disposal sites where its waste was disposed by a transporter.
  • The representation of a municipal water company in an action against the owners and operators of several industrial facilities located near the water company's water supply wells for damages caused by groundwater contamination by industrial solvents.
  • The representation of a generator of listed hazardous wastes in an action brought by the owner of the disposal company which accepted them for delivery to and disposal at the disposal company's landfill. The action, which was brought under the federal and state Superfund laws as well as Pennsylvania common law, sought several million dollars in the estimated costs involved in closing the landfill in compliance with Pennsylvania hazardous waste disposal area regulations.
  • The representation of a hazardous waste disposal company which transported industrial wastes to a municipal landfill, in an action brought by the United States Environmental Protection Agency seeking to compel generators and transporters of industrial wastes to finance the estimated $50 million closure of the landfill.
  • The representation of a municipal operator of a sewage collection and treatment system in multifaceted litigation arising out of the alleged contamination of farmland from cadmium contained in sewage sludge used as a fertilizer and soil conditioner on the land.
  • The representation of a coal mining company in an appeal of a compliance order directing the treatment or abatement of a large polluting groundwater discharge emanating from the ground approximately 200 yards off the mine site.
  • The representation of a large real estate development company in an action against the state environmental protection agency and a local municipality challenging a construction ban imposed by DER as a result of the municipality's failure to enact a sewage facilities plan acceptable to DER.
  • The representation of a municipal drinking water authority involving contamination of the public water supply with MTBE.
  • The representation of the operator of a POTW in a civil penalty action initiated by EPA under the Clean Water Act for alleged failure to enforce pre-treatment standards.
  • Representing a remediation contractor in a multi-party, multi-faceted litigation arising from a fly ash land slide that impacted a residential neighborhood.
  • Representing a waste and recycled oil recovery transporter in Superfund litigation arising out of the cleanup of a waste oil recovery facility.
  • The representation of a waste disposal company in various regulatory and permitting matters, including litigation arising out of permitting and civil penalty actions.
  • The representation of a major chemical manufacturer concerning several hazardous disposal sites where its waste was disposed by a transporter.
  • The representation of a municipal water company in an action against the owners and operators of several industrial facilities located near the water company's water supply wells for damages caused by groundwater contamination by industrial solvents.
  • The representation of a generator of listed hazardous wastes in an action brought by the owner of the disposal company which accepted them for delivery to and disposal at the disposal company's landfill. The action, which was brought under the federal and state Superfund laws as well as Pennsylvania common law, sought several million dollars in the estimated costs involved in closing the landfill in compliance with Pennsylvania hazardous waste disposal area regulations.
  • The representation of a hazardous waste disposal company which transported industrial wastes to a municipal landfill, in an action brought by the United States Environmental Protection Agency seeking to compel generators and transporters of industrial wastes to finance the estimated $50 million closure of the landfill.
  • The representation of a municipal operator of a sewage collection and treatment system in multifaceted litigation arising out of the alleged contamination of farmland from cadmium contained in sewage sludge used as a fertilizer and soil conditioner on the land.
  • The representation of a coal mining company in an appeal of a compliance order directing the treatment or abatement of a large polluting groundwater discharge emanating from the ground approximately 200 yards off the mine site.
  • The representation of a large real estate development company in an action against the state environmental protection agency and a local municipality challenging a construction ban imposed by DER as a result of the municipality's failure to enact a sewage facilities plan acceptable to DER.
  • The representation of a municipal drinking water authority involving contamination of the public water supply with MTBE.
  • The representation of the operator of a POTW in a civil penalty action initiated by EPA under the Clean Water Act for alleged failure to enforce pre-treatment standards.