Contaminated Land Inspection Stategy

The Strategy outlines the general approach to be taken in inspecting land in the District for contamination. This section will describe instances which occur outside this general inspection framework, circumstances under which previous inspection decisions should be reviewed, and measures to be taken to ensure the Strategy remains effective and up-to-date.

6.1 Review of Assumptions and Information

Specific circumstances arising may trigger a review of the assumptions and information used in site designations. These might include instances where:

* fresh information and evidence concerning a particular site is received from other statutory bodies, landowners or occupiers, members of the public or the business community;

* proposed, unplanned or unauthorised changes in the use of the land in question or surrounding land occur; and

* unplanned events occur, such as flooding, landslides, fires, spillages and other incidents.

Reviewing assumptions and information will also be a continual process as more information becomes available on areas of actual or potentially contaminated land. Assumptions will become less and any models developed for site-specific contamination will, as a result, become more refined.

6.2 Review of the Strategy

6.2.1 Procedures and Prioritisations

After the first year following its adoption, a formal review of the Strategy will be undertaken, which will consider the progress achieved. On that basis, a review of the procedures and prioritisations used in implementing the Strategy will be made and this will seek to incorporate any improvements or new procedures which have been developed during the course of the year. The effectiveness of procedures may be compared with those of other local authorities within the area. Decisions made on specific sites will be considered, and a judgement made on whether decisions to designate land as contaminated or not was correct.

If there are significant changes to the Strategy, it may be appropriate to carry out further annual reviews in following years. If, however, the Strategy is found to be operating satisfactorily throughout the period of the workplan, the next review date will be October 2004 when the inspection of the District has been completed and the remediation of contaminated sites has been prioritised.

6.2.2 Timescales

Timescales for the work still requiring completion will be reviewed at the same time as the procedures and prioritisations. The review will be produced in the form of a progress summary report.

6.3 Triggers for Early Review

Situations may occur which could trigger an early review of the Strategy, and examples of such situations include:

* significant changes in Government legislation;

* the revision of national guideline values for exposure assessment;

* technological advances in remediation techniques for hitherto untreatable sites;

* the establishment of significant case law or other precedents; and/or

* where larger areas of contaminated land are discovered in the District than originally anticipated.
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