MIAMI—Whether it's for condos, office buildings orindustrial properties, raw land is becoming moreand more scarce in Miami. That means land remediation is becoming abigger issue. It also means developers have to face newenvironmental challenges.

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GlobeSt.com caught up with Howard E. Nelson, apartner and Environmental Group chair of BilzinSumberg in Miami, and Cristina AranaLumpkin, an associate the firm's Environmental Group, toget their take on these and other related issues in part one ofthis exclusive interview. Be sure to come back to this afternoon'sMiami edition to read part two, in which our experts will discussthe benefits of land redevelopment.

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GlobeSt.com: As available raw land becomes scarce,how is land remediation playing a greater role indevelopment?

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Nelson: When you look at the inventory ofremaining raw land, you quickly realize that theoverwhelming majority of available large tracts of raw land areeither prior agricultural properties or golf courses. Both of theseuses routinely involve the legal application of controlledsubstances such as pesticides, herbicides and rodenticides, whichmay result in the presence of residual chemicals on theproperties.

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While the use of these products is normal in the course ofagricultural production or golf course maintenance, the potentialresiduals present unique problems for conversion to residentialuse. As a result, the need for more thorough environmental duediligence and innovative approaches to land remediation isheightened for these types of properties.

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GlobeSt.com: What kind of environmental challengesare usually associated with land remediation and how does this varyby use?

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Lumpkin: The environmental challenges for landremediation associated with agricultural and golf course uses—asthey become converted to residential use—is usually divided intotwo distinct types: impacts from point sources, and impactsresulting from the ubiquitous application of controlled substances.Impacts from point sources are generally handled in the traditionalremediation sense of discovery, delineation and removal ofcontaminated media.

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Impacts resulting from ubiquitous application are more difficultto deal with because they generally cover wide areas of land, andsimple source removal can become prohibitively expensive.Obviously, in redevelopment or development of former agriculture orgolf course properties for commercial or industrial use, theseissues become less complicated, as risk-based corrective actionsallow for remedial strategies to prevent exposure to contaminatedmedia, such as encapsulation rather than removal.

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GlobeSt.com: We are also seeing a lot of urbaninfill redevelopment. What are some of the most commonenvironmental uses in those instances?

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Nelson: Urban infill development generally involves more pointsource pollution from prior industrial or commercial uses. With urban infill redevelopment, we also see a lot more impact fromformer heating tanks and related petroleum impacts.

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Additionally, in dense urban corridors, infill developmentinvolves solving complicated stormwater management issues, due tothe lack of available detention areas and the complexity ofmanaging stormwater without exacerbating or moving contaminantplumes. The existence of contaminant plumes, whether on the projectsite or nearby, can also affect construction dewatering plans,particularly with respect to disposal of contaminated effluent.

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