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Contaminated land

Land can be contaminated by solids (including asbestos), liquids, gases or odours that make it unsafe or unsuitable to live or work on.

Contaminated land is a significant issue for highly urbanised environments. It can threaten the health of humans, animals, plants and waterways and the effects can be either immediate or long term. Soil contaminants can last for many decades if they leach into groundwater and waterways.

Contaminated sites may occur anywhere, however they are typically clustered in areas which have been used for heavy industry or chemically intensive agriculture. Contamination can also be caused by accidental chemical spillage, inappropriate waste disposal, leaking plant or industry and pesticides and herbicides.

Managing Contaminated Land

AlburyCity shares responsibility for contaminated land management with the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) and the Department of Planning (DoP).

Sites that pose a 'significant risk of harm' to human health and the environment as defined by the Contaminated Land Management Act 1997 are regulated by the EPA.

The remediation of contaminated land is facilitated and regulated through Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 and our Contaminated Land Management Policy. Council's Contaminated Land Policy integrates contaminated land management into the planning and development process. The policy:

  • ensures that changes of land use will not increase the risk to health or the environment
  • ensures inappropriate restrictions on land use are avoided
  • provides information to support decision making
  • informs the community.