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Former industrial and urban land is increasingly being recycled, a practice which follows current political policy and is appropriate in the more heavily populated areas of Europe. The contamination which soils and water below such land may have suffered due to past industrial activities could pose future risks to new occupiers, or to the environment as a whole, and therefore it is important that an assessment of the risk is undertaken before such land is re-used. This volume has been written specifically to assist developers, consultants and planners who are involved in the reclamation of contaminated land in ensuring that such recycling does not expose the public or the wider environment to unacceptable risks. It provides a clear rationale for why such risk assessments are needed, outlines the current legislation regulating such activities, and indicates where the responsibilities lie for control of this development. Inevitably, the assessment approach of this book draws mainly on UK experiences and regulations but the methodology and basic principles provided are universal, and would be applicable when the safe recycling of contaminated land becomes a more important issue of development in other countries. The risk assessment approach advocated in the book will be valuable to many developers of contaminated land, since it is affordable and logical, and adequately diagnostic to identify sites where re-use will not be hazardous. The book describes a comprehensive range of risks which have been given due consideration as potential problems when former industrial land is reused, whilst also dispelling many of the vague and often unjustified concerns over land contamination.
Tom Cairney is the author of The Re-Use of Contaminated Land: A Handbook of Risk Assessement, published by Wiley.