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Normal background concentrations

In April 2012, guidance was issued under the Environmental Protection Act 1990. It explains how the contaminated land regime should be implemented and refers to ‘normal’ levels of soil contaminants.

The British Geological Survey (external link) was commissioned to provide guidance on what ‘normal’ contaminant concentrations could be expected for soils in Wales. The guidance covers 7 contaminants:

  • arsenic
  • benzo[a]pyrene (BaP)
  • lead
  • cadmium
  • copper
  • mercury
  • nickel.

The final report and Technical Guidance Sheets for the 7 contaminants where normal background concentrations have been established are now available.

They can be seen on the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs website (external link).