76-7-102. Intent, findings, and purpose. (1) The legislature, mindful of its constitutional obligations under Article II, section 3, and Article IX of the Montana constitution, has enacted the Environmental Control Easement Act. It is the legislature's intent that the requirements of this chapter provide adequate remedies for the protection of the environmental life support system from degradation and provide adequate remedies to prevent unreasonable depletion and degradation of natural resources.
(2) The legislature finds that:
(a) numerous sites throughout the state contain or may contain hazardous wastes or substances that may threaten the public health, safety, or welfare or the environment if certain uses are permitted on these sites or if certain activities are not performed on these sites;
(b) at some sites, protection of the public health, safety, or welfare or the environment may be enhanced by the application and enforcement of certain restrictions on the future use of the site or requirements for performance of certain activities;
(c) the creation of an enforceable easement mechanism for imposing restrictions on the use of a site and requiring performance of operations and maintenance activities may help protect the public health, safety, and welfare and the environment by:
(i) preventing or minimizing the exposure of the public to hazardous wastes or substances;
(ii) preventing the disturbance of important features of remediation work and remedial technologies employed at the site;
(iii) ensuring that the presence of hazardous wastes or substances and the features of remediation work and remedial technologies are properly considered in the future use or development of a site; or
(iv) requiring the performance of certain activities or the prohibition or limitation of certain activities, with respect to the site; and
(d) the expenditure of public funds for the acquisition or designation of interests and rights in real property to protect the public health, safety, and welfare and the environment is in the public's interest.
(3) It is the purpose of this chapter to authorize and enable federal public entities, other public bodies, and certain qualifying private organizations to provide for:
(a) the monitoring and protection of environmental control sites to ensure that those sites are not used for purposes that may threaten the public health, safety, or welfare or the environment;
(b) a process of reviewing the need for specialized construction, development, use, and safety measures if the owner or user of an environmental control site proposes a new use for which any contamination might present a risk to the public health, safety, or welfare or the environment; and
(c) a mechanism for prohibiting or limiting certain activities or requiring certain activities on an environmental control site to enhance protection of the public health, safety, or welfare or the environment.