ADU Environmental Policy


When Demolishing an Existing Structure the Department of Building Inspection and the Bay Area Air Quality Management District Require An
Asbestos Survey For Every Demolition.
Your building Department won't Issue a
Permit without An Asbestos Survey that includes a J-card Number.

Handy link for Your Chosen Asbestos Abatement Contractor to File for A 10 Day Notice with BAAQMD

Asbestos Survey is Mandatory ADU Environmental Policy

The majority of counties do not, at this time, require an additional lead based paint survey. Berkeley does require a lead survey before a permit is issued.

If asbestos is discovered, a DOSH registered contractor is required to do the removal of the asbestos containing materials that are identified in the survey. 

Regardless whether asbestos is discovered or not a 10 day notice to BAAQM is required because bearing walls are being removed.

3-5-7 Rule to determine How
Many Asbestos Samples are Necessary

Identify homogenous areas of suspect surfacing Asbestos Containing Building Material.

Quantify the area (square footage) of each homogenous area of suspect material.

 Apply the 3, 5, 7 Rule which indicates the minimum number of samples as follows:



<1000 square feet

3 Samples


>1000 square feet, but <5000 square feet

5 Samples


>5000 square feet

7 Samples

For example, the homogenous area of suspect ceiling plaster measuring 4000 ft² would need to have five samples collected. These minimum number of samples required by AHERA and recommended by the “Pink Book” were created to minimize errors due to lack of uniformity in the distribution of asbestos throughout the material and laboratory error.

Asbestos Inspector Requirements

  • SST – Site Surveillance Technician is licensed to take asbestos samples under the supervision of a CAC.
  • CAC- California Asbestos Consultant has a J-Card License That Is Current. This license requires an annual update. This looks similar to a driver’s license.

Surfacing materials are the biggest concern of the AHERA Regulation because of their friability and/or presence in public areas. The EPA funded the production of a guidance document for sampling friable asbestos-containing materials that was published in 1985. This was years prior to the AHERA regulation. This document was entitled: “Asbestos in Buildings: Simplified Sampling Scheme for Friable Surfacing Materials.” This document is often referred to as the “Pink Book.” Many of the recommended practices in this document were adopted by the California AHERA Final Rule(Title 8) as regulations. The main recommendation adopted by AHERA (and thus OSHA by reference) was the number of samples to be taken for surfacing materials.


The “Simplified Sampling Scheme for Friable Surfacing Materials” recommends that the inspector takes 9 samples for every homogeneous area of the suspect material. The AHERA regulation did not make this recommendation mandatory for schools, realizing the costs involved in taking that many samples.

In addition to the required number of samples for surfacing materials based on their area, the “Pink Book” recommends taking quality control samples. These samples are to check the consistency of the results obtained from a laboratory. The inspector can obtain a quality control sample by taking two samples immediately adjacent to each other of the same homogenous material. These are given unique sample numbers so the laboratory analysts cannot readily identify the quality control sample. Any major discrepancy between the actual sample and the quality control sample will require additional quality assurance procedures – even more samples of the same material. The major discrepancy example would be a result of less than 1% of the actual sample and a result of 50% on the quality control sample. EPA’s “Pink Book” recommends that the inspector takes at least 1 quality control sample per building or one per 20 samples, whichever is larger. Because it is a laboratory check on the asbestos content of the material, it should be done per homogenous area of surfacing material.

If lead-based paint is discovered, then the site will require lead soil clearance testing upon completion.