Skip to main content

Contaminated Land

Volume 404: debated on Tuesday 6 May 2003

The text on this page has been created from Hansard archive content, it may contain typographical errors.

To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what measures he will introduce to ensure that his Department's objective to ensure all contaminated land is returned to beneficial use by 2030 is achieved. [109000]

I have been asked to reply.Measures are already in place to address the legacy of contaminated land. From April 2000, Part IIA of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 has placed local authorities in England under a duty to inspect their areas to identify contaminated land, as defined in the Act, and secure its remediation on the "suitable for use" principle. Further environmental measures include developing proposals to provide a more streamlined system for regulating the carrying out of remediation, and further technical guidance. Planning and building controls help ensure land is remediated as part of the development process, and new guidance in this field is in preparation.There is no objective of dealing with all contaminated land by 2030. There are Government targets relating to reclamation and re-use of brownfield land, which include cases where the land is affected by contamination. These targets are that 60 per cent. of new housing should by 2008 be provided on previously developed land and through conversion of existing buildings; and that brownfield land will be reclaimed at a rate of over 1,100 hectares per annum by 2004 (reclaiming 5 per cent. of current brownfield land by 2004 and 17 per cent. by 2010).