Land contaminated with
hazardous substances such as heavy metals (e.g.; lead and arsenic),
pesticides and hydrocarbons may pose a risk to human health and
the environment. Land contamination can occur as a result of poor
environmental management and waste disposal practices, use of
contaminated fill to reclaim or level the site, leaking underground
storage tanks and accidental spills in industrial, agricultural
or commercial activities.
There are specific industries
and common land uses which have been associated with site contamination.
Some of the activities include: service stations, chemical plants,
tanneries, cattle dips, fuel and oil storage, foundries and landfills.
Contaminated Land Management legislation and guidelines place
obligations upon local governments, owners and occupiers relating
to the identification, notification and management of contaminated