Environmental Protection Act 1990 - Part IIA Contaminated Land: statutory guidance edition 2

This document promulgates revised statutory guidance for the operation of the contaminated land regime following implementation of the Contaminated Land (Scotland) Regulations 2005. It replaces the earlier 2000 version.

PART 7: What is to be Done by Way of Remediation?

C.64 The statutory guidance in this Part is issued under section 78E(5)(a) and provides guidance on the determination by the enforcing authority of what is to be done by way of remediation - in particular, on the circumstances in which any action within the three categories of remediation action (that is, assessment, remedial treatment and monitoring actions) should be required.

Assessment Action

C.65 The enforcing authority should require an assessment action to be carried out where this is necessary for the purpose of obtaining information on the condition of the relevant land or water environment which is needed:

(a) to characterise in detail a significant pollutant linkage (or more than one such linkage) identified on the relevant land or waters for the purpose of enabling the authority to establish what would need to be achieved by any remedial treatment action;

(b) to enable the establishment of the technical specifications or design of any particular remedial treatment action which the authority reasonably considers it might subsequently require to be carried out; or

(c) where, after remedial treatment actions have been carried out, the land will still be in such a condition that it would still fall to be identified as contaminated land, to evaluate the condition of the relevant land or water environment, or the incidence of any significant harm or significant pollution of the water environment, for the purpose of supporting future decisions on whether further remediation might then be required (this applies where the remediation action concerned would not otherwise constitute a monitoring action).

C.66 The enforcing authority should not require any assessment action to be carried out unless that action is needed to achieve one or more of the purposes set out in paragraph C.65 above, and it represents a reasonable means of doing so. In particular, no assessment action should be required for the purposes of determining whether or not the land in question is contaminated land. For the purposes of this guidance, assessment actions relate solely to land which has already been formally identified as contaminated land, or to other land or water environment which might be affected by it. The statutory guidance in Chapters A and B sets out the requirements for the inspection of land and the manner in which a local authority should determine that land appears to it to be contaminated land.

Remedial Treatment Action

C.67 The enforcing authority should require a remedial treatment action to be carried out where it is necessary to achieve the standard of remediation described in Part 4, but for no other purpose. Any such remedial treatment action should include appropriate verification measures. When considering what remedial treatment action may be necessary, the enforcing authority should consider also what complementary assessment or monitoring actions might be needed to evaluate the manner in which the remedial treatment action is implemented or its effectiveness or durability once implemented.

Monitoring Action

C.68 The enforcing authority should require a monitoring action to be carried out where it is for the purpose of providing information on any changes which might occur in the condition of a pollutant, pathway or receptor, where:

(a) the pollutant, pathway or receptor in question was identified previously as part of a significant pollutant linkage; and

(b) the authority will need to consider whether any further remedial treatment action will be required as a consequence of any change that may occur.

C.69 Monitoring action should not be required to achieve any other purpose, such a general monitoring to enable the enforcing authority to identify any new significant pollutant linkages which might become present in the future. This latter activity forms part of the local authority's duty, under section 78B(1), to cause its area to be inspected from time to time for the purpose of identifying any contaminated land.

What Remediation should not be Required?

C.70 The enforcing authority should not require any remediation to be carried out for the purpose of achieving any aims other than those set out in paragraphs C.18 to C.24 above, or purposes other than those identified in this Part of this Chapter. In particular, it should not require any remediation to be carried out for the purposes of:

(a) dealing with matters which do not in themselves form part of a significant pollutant linkage, such as substances present in quantities or concentrations at which there is neither a significant possibility of significant harm being caused nor a significant possibility of pollution of the water environment being caused; or

(b) making the land suitable for any uses other than its current use, as defined paragraphs A.26 and A.27 in Chapter A.

C.71 It is, however, always open to the owner of the land, or any other person who might be liable for remediation, to carry out on a voluntary basis remediation to meet these wider objectives.


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