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Beware What Lies Beneath: Vapor Intrusion Increases Potential Liability for Past and Present Owners and Operators

April 22, 2014Article
Los Angeles Daily Journal

Between November 2012 and January 2013, employees at two buildings in a Google office complex in
Mountain View, California were exposed to hazardous chemical vapors in indoor air at levels that
exceeded site‐specific limits set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). More than 1,000
employees reportedly work in those buildings.
Google did not cause the pollution. Chemical vapors entered the buildings from decades‐old
contamination of soil and groundwater under the buildings. Google’s office complex is located at a
Superfund site impacted by former semiconductor manufacturing and other operations. Two other
semiconductor manufacturing facilities and a U.S. Navy installation also used to be located nearby and
caused contamination. Each of those facilities is also a Superfund site.