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Contaminated land

What is contaminated land

Part 2A of the 1990 Act defines “contaminated land”, and provides for the Secretary of State to issue guidance on how local authorities should determine which land is contaminated land and which is not.

Section 78A(2): “contaminated land” is any land which appears to the local authority in whose area it is situated to be in such a condition, by reason of substances in, on or under the land that – (a) significant harm is being caused or there is a significant possibility of such harm being caused; or (b) significant pollution of controlled waters is being caused, or there is a significant possibility of such pollution being caused.

Land that has been polluted or contaminated will not necessarily fall within the above legal definition of contaminated land; most sites will be assessed and investigated as part of the Planning process.