A month and a half after the close of voting on a revised version, the ASTM E1527 Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Standard is getting closer to being issued with changes for 2013. In October, the task group met at ASTM Committee Week meetings in Atlanta, GA. to discuss negative votes and comments on a ballot issued in September. During the meeting, the group of about 50 environmental professionals, users of Phase I ESAs and industry observers reviewed 17 negative ballots and about 30 affirmative ballots with comments. By the close of the meeting, most points outlined in the negative votes submitted had been resolved through editorial changes and consensus-making. The group’s leadership was then tasked with working with those who submitted the remaining negative votes in an attempt to resolve their issues or convince them to withdraw their negative votes.
As of mid-November, the task group had made great progress towards reaching a final version of the standard, but several negative votes remained. The group is now preparing to pursue the “non-persuasive” process. This allows the standard writing committee to keep the consensus-based ASTM process moving when outliers disagree with the majority of members. In order to find a negative non-persuasive, two-thirds of the committee members must vote in favor of the non-persuasive motion.
Task group leadership does expect the non-persuasive votes to affirm the current redline of the standard, and if all goes according to plan, the new ASTM E1527-13 standard should stay on track for spring 2013 publication.
Likely Changes to ASTM E1527
- REC & HREC definitions revised and new term, “CREC” or Controlled REC, added
- Vapor Migration clarified as included in Phase I ESA investigations and ASTM E2600-10 referenced
- Regulatory File Review specifically detailed in a new subsection
- Revisions to User Responsibilities section, particularly surrounding environmental lien search requirements
- Changes to appendices, especially the Table of Contents/Report Format Appendix and Legal Appendix