Contaminated land is land where a substance which presents a risk of harm to someone or something (a 'receptor') in our environment, with a 'pathway' to reach that receptor.
Our contaminated land strategy was adopted in June 2001. It tells you how we find contaminated land and what action we take.
We have identified potentially contaminated areas which we are investigating to see if we need to take any action.
How we investigate potentially contaminated land
Direct investigation: We look at land which won't be redeveloped through planning applications. We identify potentially contaminated areas and investigate whether they present risks. We have a database of areas on which we gather contaminated land information.
Investigation through the planning process: Under the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, we consider contamination issues on land being developed. Most contaminated sites are cleaned up during the redevelopment process, which brings 'brownfield' (for example previously used land) back into use.
Planning applicants are responsible for dealing with contamination on their development sites. Our guide outlines the current requirements
If you have been advised by a planning condition to install a gas or vapour protective membrane in a development, please refer to our installation guidance.
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