PADEP New Management of Fill Policy Forecast of Impacts

January 11, 2021
Michael M. Meloy, Esq. and William Hitchcock, Technical Consultant
MGKF Special Alert - Pennsylvania Forecast 2021

The proposed changes to the cleanup standards under the Pennsylvania Land Recycling and Environmental Remediation Standards Act (Act 2) described elsewhere in this forecast will also have a significant impact on construction projects requiring the import or export of fill material even if those projects are outside the scope of Act 2.  On January 1, 2020, a new version of PADEP's Management of Fill Policy went into effect and generally incorporated the Act 2 residential soil standards as clean fill concentration limits by reference.  Therefore, revisions to the Act 2 cleanup standards will also result in immediate revisions of the clean fill concentration limits.  The proposed new standard for total PCBs and the increased standard for benzo[a]pyrene should allow for more material to qualify as clean fill, which should be generally beneficial to the construction industry.  However, the anticipated significant decrease in residential cleanup standards for lead and the continued use of a residential cleanup standard for vanadium that is below naturally-occurring soil concentrations will have the opposite effect. The proposed changes to the Act 2 cleanup standards are not yet finalized but are expected to go into effect in mid-2021.