Accurately assess environmental liabilities.
Exponent's environmental engineers, scientists, and environmental economists evaluate the appropriateness and cost of environmental response actions, estimate current and future liabilities, and apportion costs among potentially responsible parties. Our highly qualified environmental consultants rely on their knowledge of the latest standards and use rigorous financial and engineering models to develop cost and liability estimates. In this context, we assist clients with transactions, mergers and acquisitions, bankruptcies, natural resource damage assessment claims, and environmental insurance claims.
There are five types of environmental liabilities as defined by Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) and the major accounting standards boards — asset retirement obligations (AROs), environmental obligations (EOs, also known as remediation liabilities), commitments, contingencies, and guarantees. AROs include asset decommissioning, demolition, and site restoration costs. EOs include environmental study, cleanup, and permit compliance costs. Commitments include leases and agreements. Contingencies include legal, natural resource damage, insurance, and other claims. Guarantees may include financial assurance for work conducted under various environmental laws.
Current accounting standards and reporting guidelines encourage companies to report all environmental liabilities at market value, which, for example, necessitates recognizing environmental remediation liabilities that, under former accounting practices, may have been categorized as "cannot be reasonably estimated." Courts evaluating solvency issues arising under corporate and bankruptcy laws value a debtor's loans and payables, including environmental liabilities.
As an environmental cost or liability matures to a different recognition benchmark or obligating event, an updated cost estimate is required under several of the accounting standards and guidelines. Exponent's consultants are well-versed in standards from the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), such as in Accounting Standards Codification 410-20 and 410-30, the Government Accounting Standards Board (GASB), such as in GASB 49 and 83, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board in Audit Standard 2501, and other best practice guidelines for environmental liability estimation, recognition, and disclosure, including ASTM E2137, E2173, and E3123.
Our Capabilities Are Unparalleled
With expertise in over 90 disciplines and hundreds of capabilities, tools, and methodologies — we get to the root of even the most complex challenges and give you the objective answers you need.
Our global and comprehensive expertise across industries gives us a deep understanding of current challenges, best industry practices, and the implications of emerging technologies.