Contaminated land—withdrawal of funding for the contaminated land regime

The following Environment practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Contaminated land—withdrawal of funding for the contaminated land regime
  • Grant funding for contaminated land enforcement
  • Withdrawal of funding
  • Implications for local authorities
  • What are the options for local authorities?
  • Increased costs for developers?
  • Bad news for residents living on or near contaminated sites

Contaminated land—withdrawal of funding for the contaminated land regime

Grant funding for contaminated land enforcement

Local authorities have a statutory duty under the Environmental Protection Act 1990, Part IIA (EPA 1990) to identify 'contaminated land' posing unacceptable risks and to then secure remediation. See Practice Note: Contaminated land—local authority duty to inspect land.

The Contaminated Land Capital Grants Scheme helped local authorities and the Environment Agency (EA) pay environmental consultants for site investigations and clean up of contaminated land under the EPA 1990, Pt IIA. According to the EA, the average cost of a site investigation is £14,500 and the average cost of remediation is £105,800.

The £2m budget previously allocated by Defra for 2013/14 funded 38 local authority sites and 5 EA sites. In 2009 the budget was £17.5m.

According to the EA's report on Dealing with contaminated land in England, published in April 2016 for the period 2000-2013, the capital grants programme paid for the remediation of 85% of contaminated land sites and 44% of special sites.

In Wales, Natural Resources Wales' report on the State of contaminated land in Wales, published in April 2016 for the period 2001-2013, states that the contaminated land capital fund paid for the remediation of 71% of contaminated land sites and 50% of special sites.

Withdrawal of funding

On 9 December 2013, Defra announced the withdrawal of funding to all local authorities in

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