Site contamination regulatory framework
The Environment Protection Act 1993 provides provisions and regulatory instruments that enables the EPA to regulate those responsible for site contamination.
The Regulatory and orphan site management framework has been developed to document the process generally applied by the EPA in determining which regulatory instrument will be used to regulate the person responsible for site contamination.
The framework provides details of the way in which the EPA:
- reviews and processes information relating to site contamination
- determines the regulatory priority of a site
- implements either a non-statutory or statutory agreement
- regulates the non-compliance of an agreement, and
- manages the reduction of regulatory involvement.
The framework is primarily for use by the EPA, and also publicly available to provide greater transparency of the regulatory process to those with liability for site contamination, and for site contamination professionals undertaking assessment and or remediation of site contamination.
The EPA takes a risk-based approach for the assessment and remediation of groundwater contamination to ensure the protection of human health and the environment.
This allows for a site to be remediated to a level that matches the future intended land use, for example industrial, commercial or high density residential use.
While it is not economically feasible to remediate every contaminated site, the EPA prioritises sites that are contaminated to an extent they present a potential public health or ecological risk.
Where there is no person liable to undertake the work, the EPA will conduct the environmental assessment and engage with all affected owners and occupiers of the land in an assessment area. Where there is a liable party, the EPA’s role is to regulate the person liable to undertake the work and engagement with the community.
- Regulatory and orphan site management framework
- Assessment areas
- Guidelines for the assessment and remediation of site contamination
- Site contamination: guideline for communication and engagement
If you have any questions please contact the Site Contamination Branch on (08) 8204 9934.