The Role of Environmental Audits
Posted by geologixaus on October 30th, 2019
Environmental audits are used by regulators to help manage the assessment and remediation of contaminated land. The purpose of an environmental audit is to review the work of environmental consultants to ensure that they have complied with the many regulations and guidelines that aim to make contaminated land safe for a proposed use.
Regulators seek audits of environmental investigations or remediation and validation works to make sure they are robust and accurate. When required for statutory purposes, they are used by regulatory authorities, local councils and planning authorities. Audits help support decisions on whether land is suitable for a current or proposed land use. They are especially important for land development decisions involving industrial land that is proposed for a more sensitive use such as residential buildings or child care facilities. Planning authorities are required to consider the potential for land contamination and ensure it is appropriately managed before development consent can be given.
Audits can also be requested by anyone with an interest in a site such as an owner, occupier or potential buyer. These audits are voluntary or ‘non-statutory’. They can be commissioned for added assurance regarding contamination risks, to seek an independent review of site reports or works, or to determine the appropriateness of an investigation, remedial action plan or management plan for a particular use. Site audits can also assist in removing a site from a contaminated land register.
Components of an audit
Throughout the audit, the auditor may issue ‘interim advice’ which is a formal opinion on aspects of the audit such as data gaps, remediation strategy or incomplete works. Interim audit advice are included in the final report.Also See: Environmental Audits, Contaminated Land, Environmental Audit, Site Audit, Land, Environmental, Audits
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