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Superfund Listening Session - New Tools to Encourage Private Investment in Cleaning Up and Reusing Superfund Sites

SFTF Recommendation No. 27: Identify Tools for Third Parties Interested in Investment or Other Opportunities Supporting the Cleanup or Reuse of National Priorities List (NPL) Sites (Goal 3/Strategy 3).

Date of Event: June 5, 2018.

The goal of Recommendation 27 is to open a dialogue between EPA and investors, lenders, prospective purchasers, and other similar non-liable parties that are involved in the cleanup and reuse of contaminated properties (especially National Priorities List (NPL) sites) to identify tools and strategies to facilitate and encourage investment in these sites.  Information on the listening session series.

On this page:

Overview of Session Topic and Issues

Recommendation 27 of the Superfund Task Force Report tasks EPA with identifying “tools for third parties interested in investment or other opportunities supporting the cleanup and reuse of NPL sites.” Specific actions under this recommendation include:

  • Outreach to third-party investors who may provide private financing or otherwise become involved in transactions involving contaminated or previously contaminated property to identify specific liability concerns acting as a barrier to investment or other opportunities in such transactions.
  • Consideration of potential new tools and approaches, as appropriate within existing statutory authorities, to address liability concerns of parties who might acquire property (e.g., enforcement guidance, model reuse assessment agreement, prospective operator agreement, prospective easement agreement).
  • Collaboration with lenders to determine standard language to be included in prospective purchaser agreements (PPAs) to facilitate financing.
  • Identification of public-private partnership investment opportunities and structure for successful arrangement.
  • Recommendations on potential tools, approaches and opportunities.

In this listening session, EPA would like to hear about:

  • The experiences of investors, lenders/financial institutions, purchasers, and other third parties with respect to supporting cleanup and revitalizing contaminated sites,
  • Considerations that may impact whether a financial institution, investor, purchaser or other third party becomes involved in a contaminated site,
  • Specific liability or other concerns/barriers that impact investment in or acquisition of these sites, and
  • Potential new tools or approaches, to complement or improve existing tools (e.g., comfort letters, bona fide prospective purchaser agreements, and prospective purchaser agreements) that would encourage investment in and/or acquisition of these sites to support cleanup and reuse.

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Who Should Attend

The session is open to the public. Interested stakeholders may include lenders and other financial institutions, consultants, attorneys, property investors, and others involved in the acquisition, cleanup, and redevelopment of contaminated property.

Questions to Session Participants for Verbal and Written Remarks

The Agency would like participants of this listening session to focus their remarks, both verbal and written submissions, on the following questions and topics:

  1. What are the significant factors that impact a financial organization’s, purchaser’s, or other third party’s decision to invest in contaminated or previously-contaminated property?
  2. What does the private sector see as barriers to investing in the cleanup and reuse of contaminated sites?
  3. What are specific liability concerns of lenders/financial institutions, investors, purchasers or third parties that CERCLA does not address through its liability defenses and EPA does not address through its existing tools?
  4. What new tools or approaches from EPA would help alleviate these concerns, including any specific language that could be added to existing tools?


  • Erin Miles (OECA/Office of Site Remediation Enforcement/Policy and Program Evaluation Division)
  • Susan Boushell (OECA/OSRE/PPED)
  • Hollis Luzecky (OECA/OSRE/Regional Support Division)

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Information Relevant to the Listening Session

Visit Listening Sessions - Superfund Task Force Recommendations webpage for more information on the series of eight listening sessions.

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