Annual Report 2010-2011 National Environment Protection Council
Tabled paper 1729
Tabled papers for 11th Assembly 2008 - 2012; Tabled papers; ParliamentNT
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National Environmental Protection Council annual report 2 0 1 0 2 0 1 1150 Q ld A SS E SS M E N T O F SI T E C O N TA M IN A T IO N 20112012 financial year. This work has been assisted by DERMs contribution to the Cooperative Research Centre Contamination Assessment and Remediation of the Environment (CRC CARE) based at the University of South Australia, which has produced detailed guidance on petroleum hydrocarbon contamination. The varied NEPM is expected to provide health-based investigation levels for soil, soil gas and contaminated groundwater for the predominant exposure pathway of hydrocarbon vapour intrusion into buildings. The NEPM variation has completed the final public consultation phase. Submissions have been assessed and contributions incorporated into the final drafts where appropriate with the results of additional research. The NEPM variation will provide best practice guidance on a range of site assessment issues including revised healthbased investigation levels, a new national methodology for derivation of ecological investigation levels, dealing with petroleum hydrocarbon contamination, updated site characterisation technologies and assessing asbestos soil contamination. The guidance will improve assessment and response to potential human health risks and provide a scientific basis for the evaluation of ecological risks from common soil contaminants. The current NEPM has continued as an effective technical basis for site assessment for contaminated site professionals operating in Queensland. Statutory approval conditions related to development require NEPM adherence. The quality control procedures applied by DERM in internal review of assessment reports involve a review of the practitioners adherence to the NEPM. Additional information is requested where there is poor reporting and NEPM inconsistency. Similarly, Queensland-appointed TPRs review compliance with the NEPM by practitioners in assessment work. The acceptance of accredited auditors from other Australian jurisdictions continues to provide an additional check of consistency between Queensland and other Australian jurisdictions. In the reporting period, an estimated 83 land parcels were either removed from the EMR/CLR or made fit for use through the approval of statutory Site Management Plans. This is a significant decrease over the previous financial year and may partly reflect the decrease in property development activity on contaminated sites. This statistic can be distorted by some development sites comprising multiple lots that have not been amalgamated prior to development application. The use of the NEPM played a major role in achieving these outcomes and provided clear guidance for delivery of high quality work by site assessors.
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