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Contaminated Land

Land could be contaminated as a result of industrial work.

Most sites would have been cleaned up when they were redeveloped, however, this is not always the case, especially if the sites were redeveloped some time ago.

Under Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990, we have to inspect our District to check for contaminated land which may cause risks to people’s health or the environment.

Environmental Health is responsible for advising on site investigation and remediation reports which they receive though the planning and building control process

We produced a Contaminated land strategy in 2013 (which you can view in the Related Content). This states how contaminated land in our district will be identified, and investigated.

We are required to hold a register of all regulatory action taken regarding contaminated land. No Contaminated land has currently been identified in our District, so there is no register in place at the moment.

How does this affect me?

Builders and Developers

If you are a builder or developer you may want to visit our technical advice page for builders and developers. This page provides advice about the law, new developments, building and planning involving contaminated land. A link to this page can be found in the Related Content section.

Moving House buying or selling a property

Before you buy a property you should have an Environmental search in order to find out if a property is likely to be affected by contamination

Solicitors and conveyancers normally carry out these searches on your behalf, for example an Envirosearch or Homecheck report.

If potential contaminated land is identified in the search, further enquires are normally made to us. These are called Environmental Information Requests. For more information about Environmental Information Requests please see our ‘Buying and Selling a Property – Environmental Information' page below.

Domestic Central Heating Oil and contamination

Over recent years there has been an increase in the number of pollution incidents caused by poorly maintained domestic central heating oil tanks. In some cases drinking water supplies have been contaminated, and people have had to leave their homes because oil in the ground has produced fumes that have made it impossible to live in the properties. The cost of cleaning up after a leak or spill can often run into thousands of pounds.

The Essex Contaminated Land Consortium have produced a booklet which provides advice on how to prevent oil spills, and what to do if one does happen. You can view or download this in the Related Content section. If you have any further questions about Contaminated land you can contact us by telephoning our Customer Services team on 01702 318111, or e-mailing us using this form