09/30/2019

Good Sam: A Base Hit Not a Grand Slam

American College of Environmental Lawyers (ACOEL)

Depending on your source, abandoned mine lands across the United States number over 100,000 sites. Some, but not all, pose a threat to human health and the environment. The magnitude of the issue engulfs the resources of federal and state agencies. Moreover, responsible parties are most often dead and buried companies, leaving the need for options outside of routine scenarios and traditional regulatory programs relying on viable responsible parties.

The need for otherwise non-liable parties to voluntarily agree to study and remediate troubled sites seems the most likely path to success. Industry and public interest groups alike are needed if the issue of abandoned mine lands is to be addressed. The Good Samaritan program was intended to encourage private voluntary action.

Holland & Hart’s Kevin Murray authored the article titled “Good Sam: A Base Hit Not a Grand Slam,” published in the American College of Environmental Lawyers (ACOEL) September 30, 2019 blog. Murray explores the existing Good Samaritan program intended to encourage non-liable private parties to voluntarily step up and clean up abandoned mine sites. Murray discusses why recently proposed legislation that attempts to address deficiencies in the existing Good Samaritan program is only a “base hit,” and suggests revisions to the legislation needed to create certainty of entry and exit necessary to make any permit program a “grand slam” for private sector engagement.

To read the full article, click here.

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