Pollution exclusion

A pollution exclusion is commonly seen on a policy declaration for a commercial general liability (CGL). The type of wording can apply to a partial or a complete pollution exclusion.

A pollutant can be any gaseous or thermal irritant or contaminant, solid and liquids including smoke, odor, vapor, soot, fumes, acid, alkalis, chemical, water material and by-products. This can include materials which are intended to be or have been reconditioned, reclaimed or recycled.

If your business is involved in an operation that has an environmental risk from a possible or threatened spill, dispersal, discharge, emission, leakage, release, migration or release of "pollutants" then you need to review your insurance policy. You need to consider the frequency that this could happen and the severity of the consequences if there was such a situation.

Sit down with your insurance broker or agent and find out what limitations you have in regards to a possible pollution loss. If you do have an exclusion then be sure to fully understand what coverage you have and do not have. Take control of your insurance.