Today we are highlighting a remediation project that occurred at a single family residential property. Previous owners had converted to natural gas heat from #2-fuel oil, which was stored in an underground storage tank (UST) that was likely installed in the 1950s when the house was built. Upon the passing of the previous property owners, the family removed the tank to place the property on the market for sale. During the tank removal, numerous holes were discovered in the tank causing a release of fuel oil into the environment. By law these types of releases are reported to the Massachusetts
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Have you received a notification letter from the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) warning you that you have underground storage tanks (USTs) that need to be removed? As of August 7, 2017, all underground single walled steel tanks in the state of Massachusetts must be removed, permanently closed-in-place, or placed out-of-service (then removed or permanently closed-in-place by July 1, 2018). At the time of the tank removal, environmental conditions must be assessed per state and federal regulations, since it is possible that contamination may exist in the area of the UST(s). In Massachusetts, tanks must be closed in accordance
When it comes to environmental contamination of real estate, the legal principle of “you break it, you buy it” does not apply – in fact, the reality is much worse! Under the federal Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) legislation (commonly known as Superfund), as well as state laws like Massachusetts’ C. 21E, legal liability for environmental contamination is “strict.” This means that the property owner is per se responsible for any contamination at that property - period. It does not matter if the owner caused or contributed to the contamination. It does not matter if the contamination