Guidance aids local authorities to meet their contaminated land responsibilities

The Environment Agency has published guidance to assist local authorities with their responsibilities under the contaminated land regime (Part 11A of the EPA 1990). Funded by DEFRA, the guide is a result of collaboration between the Agency, the Local Government Association (LGA), the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) and DEFRA

Implementation of the regime, which came into force on 1 April 2000 in England and in Wales on 1 July 2001, is gathering pace with the recent publication of Inspection Strategies by the local authority.

The guide's comprehensive coverage includes an overview of Part 11A, with sections on inspection, determination and notification; liability; identification of remediation requirements; regulation and enforcement of remediation; plus appendices listing key publications on land contamination; an example of a Part 11A Case File Log; and cross reference between the main provisions of Part11A, the Statutory Guidance, Regulations and the Guide.

The guide has been prepared by a consortium lead by Mary Harris of Monitor Environmental Consultants with significant contributions from Judith Lowe. Other members of the consortium included the Centre for Environmental Research and Training (University of Birmingham), Denton Wilde Sapte and MA Smith Environmental Consultancy.

Freely available
The guidance is available to download free of charge from the web sites of the LGA (www.lga.gov.uk) and the CIEH (www.cieh.org).

The three participating bodies see major benefits resulting from their collaboration on the guide. Environment Agency Chief Executive, Barbara Young, said: "The Environment Agency welcomes the publication of the Guide which will greatly assist local authorities in successfully implementing their inspection strategies. We are looking forward to working closely with our local authority colleagues."

Howard Price, Assistant Secretary of CIEH, added: "Part 11A is a complicated piece of legislation; the CIEH is delighted to have been able to work with all the other key players in its operation to shed a bit more light on it and, in particular, to help our members in local authorities apply it consistently and avoid some of the pitfalls."

For the LGA, Cllr Jane Chevis, who chairs the Public Protection Executive, commented: "The Part 11A contaminated land regime presents local authorities, as the principal regulator, with a series of significant challenges. The production of the LA guide is as a result of effective collaboration between the LGA, CIEH, the Agency and DEFRA and it is hoped that this guide, and associated training, will equip local authority officers with the knowledge they need to enforce the legal requirements consistently and proportionately."


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