Real Estate Disclosure Requirements of “Environmental Hazards”
We believe that the proposed biomass plant constitutes, based upon one’s proximity to the facility, an “Environmental Hazard” requiring disclosure delivered to a buyer by a seller in writing.
Environmental hazards are noxious or annoying conditions which are man-made
hazards not natural hazards. As such the conditions are classified as either injurious
to the health of humans or an interference with an individual’s sensitivities. They
have an adverse effect on a property’s value and desirability. Thus they are considered defects which, if known, must be disclosed as material facts since the hazards might
affect a prospective buyer’s decision to purchase the property. Crane, Fred. Ed.
“Due Diligence & Disclosures.” First Tuesday. Riverside, CA. 2006 pp. 103-4
According to Jim Turner, Operations Manager of a biomass facility in Loyalton, just north of Truckee, “the first thing people notice. . . is the smell.” Sierra Sun, October 15, 2010
Couple this fact with the increased trucking of biomass waste to the plant and the accompanying fumes, traffic, as well as noise, and one could conclude this fits the category of noxious, annoying, and man-made. Were one not to disclose this, one could run the legal risk of having a sale invalidated after the fact. We do not, therefore, view the plant as “friendly.”