What are the three statutory defenses under CERCLA liability?

What are the three statutory defenses under CERCLA liability?

Congress amended CERCLA in 2002 to add three defenses to CERCLA liability, being the “bona fide prospective purchaser” defense, the “contiguous landowner” defense, and the “innocent landowner” defense.

What does the CERCLA Act protect?

The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act — otherwise known as CERCLA or Superfund — provides a Federal “Superfund” to clean up uncontrolled or abandoned hazardous-waste sites as well as accidents, spills, and other emergency releases of pollutants and contaminants into the environment …

What is the biggest problem with CERCLA?

A lack of federal funding combined with the cost of cleanup remains a large factor in CERCLA’s less than rapid progress on cleaning its listed sites. The Superfund is notably underfunded: the program saw its budget nearly cut in half between 1999 and 2013.

Who is responsible for CERCLA?

CERCLA invokes theories and elements of environmental law, property law, and tort law. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is responsible for enforcing CERCLA.

When can CERCLA be used?

Under 42 U.S. Code § 9606, CERCLA allows for enforcement “when the President determines that there may be an imminent and substantial endangerment to the public health or welfare or the environment because of an actual or threatened release of a hazardous substance from a facility.”

What happens if you violate CERCLA?

Penalties under CERCLA EPA is permitted to seek penalties of between $32,500 and $37,500 for each day of non-compliance. Stipulated penalties – A settlement agreement may include stipulated penalties.

How is CERCLA enforced?

The EPA enforces CERCLA through the Superfund Enforcement program. This program allows three options for the EPA to enforce the law if responsible owners and operators of a site are found and can pay for cleanup costs: administrative and judicial orders, voluntary settlement agreements and cost-recovery actions.

How do you qualify for innocent landowner defense under CERCLA?

Like contiguous property owners (CPOs), persons desiring to qualify as innocent landowners must perform “all appropriate inquiries” prior to purchase and cannot know, or have reason to know, of contamination in order to have a viable defense as an innocent landowner.

What is an innocent landowner under CERCLA?

Put most simply, the innocent landowner defense allows owners of contaminated property to escape CERCLA liability if the contamination was placed on the property before acquisition, and the landowner did not know, or have reason to know, at the time of acquisition of the contamination’s presence.