Land contamination is most often the result of past uses. It can occur as a result of poor environmental management and waste disposal practices or accidental spills in industrial or commercial activities. The poor management of contaminated land can present a risk to public health and the environment. The following objectives and controls allow Council to make a full assessment of any contamination risks, prior to determining a development application. It notes that State Environmental Planning Policy (Resilience and Hazards) 2021 states that Council must not grant consent unless it has considered whether the land is contaminated.
- Make informed decisions about the capability of land to support development based on the framework for the management of Contaminated Lands in the Camden LGA as set out in the Council’s adopted policy for the Management of Contaminated Lands;
- Minimise the risks to human health and the environment from the development of potentially contaminated land; and
- Ensure that potential site contamination issues are adequately identified and remediated at the subdivision stages.
- An assessment is to be made by the applicant under State Environmental Planning Policy (Resilience and Hazards) 2021 (or equivalent) as to whether the subject land is contaminated prior to the submission of a development application.
Note: The following documents prepared by NSW Environmental Protection Authority, the National Environmental Protection Council, and Camden Council, where relevant, must be used in preparing contamination assessments and all levels of contaminated site reports:
- Contaminated Sites: Sampling Design Guidelines
- Contaminated Sites: Guidelines for Consultants Reporting on Contaminated Sites
- Contaminated Sites: Guidelines for Assessing Service Station Sites
- Contaminated Sites: Guidelines for the NSW Site Auditor Scheme
- National Environmental Protection (Assessment of Site Contamination) Amendment Measure 2013
- Council’s Adopted Policy Management of Contaminated Lands
- If contamination is present on the land, Council must consider whether the proposed land use is suitable or, if not suitable, can the land be made suitable following remediation pursuant to State Environmental Planning Policy (Resilience and Hazards) 2021. Where land is proposed to be remediated, appropriate documentation is to be presented to Council supporting the works to be undertaken to achieve suitability.
- Where development is proposed on a site where the Council suspects that contamination may be present or for applications proposing a change of use to a more sensitive land use (e.g. residential, education, public recreation facility etc), a Site Contamination Investigation must be submitted with the DA. Depending on the outcome of the investigation, more detailed Environmental Site Investigations may also be required.
- All contamination investigations (Stage 1 or 2), remediation (Stage 3) and validation work (Stage 4) must be undertaken by a suitably qualified consultant and in accordance with the protocols of Council’s Policy – Management of Contaminated Lands and the NSW EPA Contaminated Sites Guideline Booklets or NEPM (2013 Amended), where relevant.
- Development applications for land subdivision and sensitive land uses must be accompanied by a contamination investigation report as required by Council’s Policy - Management of Contaminated Lands.
- If a preliminary (Stage 1) contamination investigation identifies contamination, then a detailed (Stage 2) investigation will also be required. Where the detailed investigation triggers a requirement for remediation then a Remediation Action Plan (Stage 3) must also be submitted with the development application. All required remediation works will require development consent before works can commence.
NOTE: Council may require a ‘Site Audit’ review conducted by a NSW EPA Accredited Site Auditor to be provided at any stage of the contamination investigation, remediation, and validation stages. All site audit reviews will lead to a ‘Site Audit Statement’ to be issued by the Site Auditor at the conclusion of works.