When it comes to real estate development, environmental factors can have a big impact. With all of the regulations in place to protect our climate, it can be difficult to keep up at the local, state, and federal levels. Fortunately, that’s where we come in. The Law Offices of Kirk Halpin & Associates, P.A. excels in real estate matters, including helping you to maintain your environmental compliance. Today, we’ll start by going over the basics.
What falls under the Environmental Compliance umbrella?
As you can imagine, pretty much anything and everything related to the surrounding land and climate. This can include waste water management, public health & safety, air emissions, local wetland protection, hazardous transportation, and climate change. Depending on the scope and location of your upcoming project, you may have to comply with multiple regulations, such as the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, the National Environmental Protection Act, the National Forest Management Act, the Endangered Species Act, the Federal Land Policy, and many more. This can involve additional reporting measures to various agencies, meeting certain notification deadlines, and obtaining the necessary permits before you can successfully move forward. We help you to stay on top of all this, so your real estate transaction goes as smoothly as possible—and you limit your future liability.
What happens if we fail to comply?
Unfortunately, without the proper procedures in place, you’re leaving yourself and your business open to trouble. By doing things the right way the first time, you’ll be saving money. Anything that’s found to be out of compliance later on, you’ll likely have to remove and/or redo. Therefore, you’re effectively doubling your building costs—at a minimum. That’s without factoring in any potential penalties from government organizations into the projections.
Even if you unintentionally violate today’s environmental protection policies, you can still be held accountable for years to come. Especially when cases of contamination come into play, they can trace it back to you as the original developer and hold you responsible for damages well into the future. When it’s truly not your fault, we also work to protect you from liability where the liability should fall elsewhere. So, if you inherit a property that may be contaminated, we’ll do our due diligence to locate the responsible parties and pursue legal recourse from them. By involving us in your project from the very beginning, we can even help you with an environmental risk-assessment to look for potential pitfalls like this.
What’s the bigger picture?
Keep in mind that these measures are all in place for a reason. They exist to protect the local environment, as well as the people who live nearby. So, even though the extra precautions may seem daunting, they’re serving an important purpose. After all, the greatest potential damage from a compliance failure is lasting climate change and threats to public safety.
Plus, there’s increased pressure to act as an environmentally responsible business today. When introducing new real estate to any community, approaching the deal with an eye for compliance can help you to create a good rapport with its members. Local businesses may become more likely to work with you. Moreover, it adds a positive public relations aspect to the entire transaction. If you incorporate more eco-friendly options like sustainable energy sources and water use reduction strategies, you’ll enhance this image (even as you lower your operating costs). So, try to think of environmental compliance as a positive service you’re providing for the community. When you need help with all intricacies needed to maintain this important feature, give us a call!