'Green" has become the decade's new catchphrase. Businesses and individuals alike are constantly searching for ways to reduce energy use, waste and the harmful greenhouse-gas emissions that their organizations emit into the environment. But, long before "carbon footprint' became a common phrase, commercial real estate owners and developers nationwide have been concerned about the possible environmental impact and/or liabilities produced by their activities.
Whether it’s a manufacturer or a construction firm, the response to the environmental risk profile question is nearly always the same, “What’s that?”
While this is not totally surprising, it is still dumbfounding how organizations can purchase environmental insurance without thoroughly assessing their environmental risks. Here are some simple first steps that will assist business owners and insurance brokers to create profiles that will help them better understand and manage environmental risks.
Anyone who operates a chemical, petrochemical or bulk petroleum terminal facility has likely encountered a natural resource damages (NRD) claim. But since NRD claims have historically only been assessed after a catastrophic environmental contamination event, such as the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster, many risk professionals may not have had any experience with them at all. This may be about to change, however, with many now referring to natural damages as a "sleeping giant" due to the potential lor vast recoveries under a host of federal and state laws. Before moving onto a more detailed discussion of this type of claim, first, it is is important to ensure we understand the necessary language.