Those looking to transfer property or close industrial operations in New Jersey no longer can ask the state Department of Environmental Protection whether such action would trigger cleanup requirements under the Industrial Site Recovery Act (ISRA).

As of May 1, NJDEP ceased taking applications for ISRA applicability determinations. If you believe that you might be subject to ISRA, you probably are, and should check with a lawyer or an environmental consultant before completing a transaction involving, or terminating operations at, an industrial operation.

ISRA generally requires owners and operators of an industrial establishment who propose to transfer ownership or operations, or cease operations, to first conduct an environmental investigation of the property, and, if necessary, clean it. ISRA includes exclusions for certain types of transactions, as well as for operations that do not qualify as "industrial." Until this month, those who were unsure whether ISRA applied could obtain an applicability determination from NJDEP. Now, the regulated community must rely on lawyers and consultants to help make the hard calls on applicability.


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