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Significance and Use
4.1 Use—This guide is intended for use on a voluntary basis for evaluating data for long term storage as they relate to environmental matters. The user may elect to apply this guide for any or all of these purposes:
4.1.1 Determining an entity’s document retention policies;
4.1.2 Designing and implementing a system for cataloging the documents stored under this guide;
4.1.3 Documenting whether a property is subject to regulatory action;
4.1.4 Supporting evaluation of whether similar environmental risks (for example, permits, plant, or process expansion) are being recognized at similar points in their lifecycle per Guide ;
4.1.5 Supporting evaluation of whether similar environmental risks and liabilities are being managed to similar outcomes per Guide ;
4.1.6 Supporting the determination of liability values per Guide ;
4.1.7 Supporting due diligence analysis for proposed mergers, acquisitions, or spinoffs;
4.1.8 Documenting key decisions on environmental liability provisions, reserves, budgets, and cash flow forecasts, including recognition benchmarks and obligating events (see Guide );
4.1.9 Providing documentation to support the identification and analysis of liabilities associated with:
22.214.171.124 Certain remedial alternatives;
126.96.36.199 Future land uses, property transfer, and redevelopment decisions;
188.8.131.52 Land use alternatives for former landfills and chemically impacted sites; and
184.108.40.206 Meeting regulatory requirements;
4.1.10 Designing and implementing project and program controls;
4.1.11 Defending against third-party lawsuits;
4.1.12 Calculating insurance premiums;
4.1.13 Making and settling insurance claims;
4.1.14 Making purchase accounting adjustments;
4.1.15 Preparing an audit defense; and
4.1.16 Completing financial and investment analysis.
4.2 Needs Regarding Document Formats—Preserve data across time, eliminate duplicate file collection, and maintain data and files in contemporary formats to avoid stranded/obsolete data.
4.2.1 General Practice—Maintain documents in original format; every ten years, migrate files to a current version of the most popular application in the following categories:
220.127.116.11 Text documents (such as pdf and word-processing files);
18.104.22.168 Still images (such as JPEG and GIF);
22.214.171.124 Video images;
126.96.36.199 GIS files;
188.8.131.52 E-mail; and
184.108.40.206 In the case of paper and facsimile documents, photographs, photographic negatives, and motion picture film, digitization should be completed on the best available copy within ten years of creation (or as soon as possible).
1.1 This guide describes good commercial and customary practice in documenting environmental risks, project, and program knowledge.
1.2 Considering that management of environmental liabilities can span very long timeframes, users of this guide understand that preserving key findings, decisions, obligations, commitments, and guarantees for coming generations of project teams is essential to efficient management of associated assets and liabilities.
1.3 Units—The values stated in inch-pound units are to be regarded as standard. The values given in parentheses are mathematical conversions to SI units that are provided for information only and are not considered standard.
1.4 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety, health, and environmental practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.
1.5 This international standard was developed in accordance with internationally recognized principles on standardization established in the Decision on Principles for the Development of International Standards, Guides and Recommendations issued by the World Trade Organization Technical Barriers to Trade (TBT) Committee.
2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.
E1527 Practice for Environmental Site Assessments: Phase I Environmental Site Assessment Process
E1689 Guide for Developing Conceptual Site Models for Contaminated Sites
E1990 Guide for Performing Evaluations of Underground Storage Tank Systems for Operational Conformance with 40 CFR, Part 280 Regulations
E2091 Guide for Use of Activity and Use Limitations, Including Institutional and Engineering Controls
E2137 Guide for Estimating Monetary Costs and Liabilities for Environmental Matters
E2173 Guide for Disclosure of Environmental Liabilities
E2681 Guide for Environmental Management of Underground Storage Tank Systems Storing Hazardous Substances or Petroleum
E2790 Guide for Identifying and Complying With Continuing Obligations
U.S. Financial Accounting Standards Board StandardsASC Topic 410-30 Other environmental obligations ASC Topic 450 Contingencies ASC Topic 460 ASC Topic 820 Fair value measurement
U.S. Governmental Accounting Standards Board StandardsStatement 49 Statement 6 Accounting and Financial Reporting for Special Assessments Statement 72 Fair value measurement and application Statement 83 Certain asset retirement obligations
International Accounting Standards Board StandardIAS 37 Provisions, contingent liabilities and contingent assets Available from the International Accounting Standards Board, www. iasplus.com.
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ASTM E3228-19, Standard Guide for Environmental Knowledge Management, ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA, 2019, www.astm.orgBack to Top