Past or current use of land can result in levels of certain substances being higher than recognised acceptable levels. This may result in a risk to human health or the environment and the land could be considered as contaminated and unsuitable for a proposed use in its existing state.
A contaminated land assessment is often required by Local Authorities when submitting a planning application to re-develop sites – especially brownfield sites. They are also sometimes needed for a site/company pre-purchase due diligence study or as part of a lending assessment for financial institutions.
Using a phased risk based approach is a recognised and cost effective way to meet Local Authority requirements under Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 in addressing potentially contaminated land.
X3 Environmental can provide a comprehensive Phase 1 Desktop Study report (also known as a Preliminary Risk Assessment) which will contain all the relevant information needed at this stage to identify potential risks, liabilities and constraints on a development site and give advice regarding any further site investigation requirements.
In many circumstances, a Phase 1 report is all that is needed. However, further phased reports including Phase 2 Intrusive Investigation, Remediation Strategy and Verification Report can be undertaken by X3 Environmental as necessary.
The Phase 1 Desktop Study involves the following +
- Research and analysis of historical maps. Ordnance survey and aerial photos of the site and the immediate surrounding area
- Review of planning history using the local authority data base
- Review of geological maps
- Flood risk potential by reference to Environment Agency mapping and British Geological Survey records
- Groundwater vulnerability using Environment Agency classification and information
- Active and closed landfill search within 500m of the site boundary
- Review of the Envirocheck Database and analysis of any environmental information
- Site walkover (not included in the basic desktop study)
- Assessment of any risks and pollutant linkages
- A full Conceptual Site Model (identifying potential sources of contamination, pollution pathways and potential receptors)