Contamination Testing

Edwards Agricultural Supplies offers ground contamination testing for all your ground works, including farm, new build and demolition of green belt and brown field sites.

Land can be contaminated by things like:

  • heavy metals, such as arsenic, cadmium and lead
  • oils and tars
  • chemical substances and preparations, like solvents
  • gases
  • Asbestos

Contamination can occur from the lands previous use or by leaching from neighbouring properties. Soil analysis can detail what and how much contamination you may have.

Land is legally defined as ‘contaminated land’ where substances are causing or could cause:

  • significant harm to people, property or protected species
  • significant pollution of surface waters (for example lakes and rivers) or groundwater
  • harm to people as a result of radioactivity

Land fill tax may be reduced if you are able to provide details of the contamination levels of the soil.

At EAS soil sampling is completed by a member of our experienced team. A visual inspection of the area is completed to assess the site and discuss the previous known, current, and potential use before samples are taken. The number of samples that are taken is dependent on the area to be tested, the location of the potentially contaminated soil. The sites previous and current use will determine the nature of potential contamination and the degree of risk posed.

Should you not require a site visit, we can send you an appropriate container for you to sample your soil and send to us. This must be accompanied with picture evidence of the site and details of where the samples were taken.

Soil testing is completed by a UKAS accredited ISO/IEC 17025 Analytical Laboratory ensuring compliance to MCERTS. Results will be supplied on a Certificate of Analysis suitable for you to submit to your local Council and Environment Agency if required.

Please note: Chain of custody cannot be assured if you complete your own sampling.

Our approved testing laboratories are able to complete a full range of testing, including:

  • Total arsenic, lead, cadmium, chromium, mercury, selenium, nickel, zinc
  • Hot water-soluble boron
  • Total cyanide
  • Easily liberated sulphide
  • Elemental sulphur
  • Water soluble sulphate
  • Total phenols index
  • Speciated polyaromatic Hydrocarbons (EPA-16)
  • Extractable Petroleum Hydrocarbons C10-C40
  • pH
  • Available nutrients
  • Potassium and Magnesium
  • Organic matter
  • Total Nitrogen
  • Electrical Conductivity in water and Calcium Sulphate
  • Density
  • Textural classification and particle size distribution.

The contaminated land regime under Part 2A of the Environment Protection Act 1990, Section 57 of the Environment Act 1995, (incorporating England and Wales) takes a risk-based approach to the ‘likelihood of harm to human or environmental receptors’. Evidence of ‘unacceptable risk’ or ‘risk of unacceptable risk’ should be scientifically based. Edwards Agricultural Supplies, incorporating Soil Advisory can survey the area in question, take samples and submit to an ISO17025 accredited independent Laboratory for analysis. Analytical results will be reported back to you on an authorised Certificate of Analysis for your submission to the relevant authority. Within Part 2A there needs to be a ‘contaminant linkage’ for a risk to exist, therefore contaminants must be present in, on or under the land in a form and quantity that poses a hazard, a single or multiple pathway or route by which they might significantly harm people, the environment, or property; or significantly pollute controlled waters. Analytical data can provide evidence of the actual presence (or absence) of contaminants.

Within the Contaminated Land Regulations 2006 and subsequent amendment The Contaminated Land (England) Amendment Regulations 2012, the ‘polluter pays’, therefore assessment of the level of contamination can assist in the determination of the cost of any disposal or remedial action required.

The Environmental Damage (Prevention and Remediation) (England) (Wales) Regulation 2009, and 2015 incorporates damage to land and damage to water, surface and ground, incorporates imminent threats as well as actual cases of pollution. Analysis may demonstrate that any action you have taken, whether this is remedial or preventative, has been effective.

Analytical data can detail the contaminants or pollutants present and are frequently requested in support of Planning Applications for both Green and Brown field sites. Within the National Planning Policy Framework responsibility for securing a safe development on a site affected by contamination rests with the developer and/or landowner, and that after remediation, as a minimum, land should not be capable of being determined as contaminated land under Part IIA of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

For further information please call us right away!