Category Archives: necessary response costs

Complaints Are Not Totally Meaningless: A CERCLA Plaintiff Must Allege Disposal Against a Former Owner

I know it may surprise some litigators, but occasionally the allegations in a complaint do matter.  In Garrett Day v. International Paper, the Court dismissed CERCLA claims brought by the current owner of a former paper mill located in Dayton, Ohio, ohioagainst alleged former owners.  The opinion covers a lot of issues, but the most important is the distinction between “release” and “disposal” under CERCLA. … More

Is Superfund a Machine for Manufacturing Tea Party Members?

A group of PRPs received an oversight cost bill pursuant to a CERCLA consent decree.  (The following details are intentionally vague to protect both the innocent and the guilty.)  The bill was for several hundred thousand dollars.  During the year covered by the bill, the PRPs spent no money cleaning up the area of the site covered by the invoice.  They spent little or no money monitoring the area of the site covered by the invoice. … More

Superfund Rant For a New Congress

So the new Congress will be controlled by the GOP.  The House and Senate will consider various bills to rein in EPA authority.  Here’s one relatively modest suggestion for congressional consideration:  amend CERCLA to limit EPA’s authority to recover oversight costs.

How many of us in the private sector have been in meetings with EPA where EPA had more technical people in attendance than the PRPs who were performing the remedy? … More

What Response Costs Are Necessary Under CERCLA

In a post last year, I discussed what I I thought was the dubious dismissal of  a CERCLA cost recovery action in Stratford Holding, LLC v. Fog Cap Retail Investors LLC.   That case involved a holding that the costs of  investigating the presence of solvents in the groundwater above regulatory standards were not   “necessary” response costs because the the state had declined to list the site on its Hazardous Sites Inventory. … More