Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990

Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990, as inserted by Section 57 of the Environment Act 1995, was brought into force on 1 April 2000.

The legal definition of contaminated land (as of April 2012 from Section 78A(2) of Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990) is:

' …any land which appears to the local authority in whose area it is situated to be in such a condition, by reason of substances in, on or under the land, that:

  • significant harm is being caused or there is the significant possibility of such harm being caused; or
  • significant pollution of controlled waters is being caused, or there is a significant possibility of such pollution being caused.

Controlled waters include all surface watercourses or bodies, including those which are man made, and also groundwater.

Development of land will have to take into account Part 2A as to alter the use of the land may bring the development inside the statutory definition of contaminated land.

A key element of the Part 2A regime is the Source-Pathway-Receptor, known as a "contaminant linkage". The meaning of each element is as follows:

The source is the contamination in, on or under the land; the pathway is the route by which the contamination reaches the receptor; and the receptor is defined as living organisms, ecological systems or property which may be harmed

Without the clear identification of all three elements of the contaminant linkage, land cannot be identified as contaminated land under the Part 2A regime.

How Part 2A may affect you

Any person, organisation or business may be liable to pay for the remediation of contaminated land if they caused or knowingly permitted the contaminating substances to be in, on or under the land or if they own or occupy contaminated land where no polluter can be found.

Cheshire East Contaminated Land Officers will endeavour to work in an open and transparent way. If the site that you own, occupy, work or live on or next to is to be inspected under Part 2A you may be notified ahead of the works and kept informed of the progress of the works.

Information may be supplied to you in the form of letters, open day and public meetings. This, however, will be decided on a site to site basis and will be dependant on the best way to address the majority of people affected.

If you have concerns about the land you own, occupy, work or live on or next to, or you just want to speak to a Contaminated Land Officer please use the contact details.

Contaminated Land Strategy

Part 2A legislation requires all Local Authorities to produce a written strategy on how they are to carry out their duties. The current version of Cheshire East's Contaminated Land Inspection Strategy is in the process of being adopted by the authority, the draft version of this strategy can be viewed below.

Work done under Part 2A

In 2013 the Barony Playing Fields, Nantwich were investigated under Part 2A of the Environmental Protection Act 1990, due to their former use. These investigations are now complete and a Non-Technical Summary of the works has been produced.

More information

More information on the Part 2A regime can be found on the Department of the Environment Food and Rural Affairs website - GOV.UK

The site also includes information on DEFRA policy, a Frequently Asked Questions section relating to Part 2A and external links to other sources of contaminated land information.