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Brownfield chaos feared after civil servant switch

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GOVERNMENT EFFORTS to boost development of brownfield land face chaos because key civil servants are being switched to other projects, industry sources claimed this week.

The official responsible for drafting the new law, which will make it easier to clean up brownfield sites, is expected to move to a new project next month.

Part IIa of the Environmental Protection Act will clarify who has to pay for cleaning up conta- mination. It will also clarify which types of remediation methods should be used depending on the type of pollution and the nature of the redevelopment plan.

This should make it easier for developers to build on polluted industrial sites, although interpreting the legislation is initially expected to be difficult.

Department of the Environment Transport and the Regions head of land quality Malcolm Lowe heads the team responsible for drawing up the legislation. Part IIa is expected to come into force next month.

Lowe is moving on to a project to simplify the licensing of land remediation plant.

Experts say officials who understand the regime should stay put to advise on how Part IIa is interpreted. Without their guidance, industry sources fear polluters, owners, developers, contractors and local authorities will struggle to interpret the legislation. 'Part IIa is key legislation and very complex. People will need interpretation and clarification,' said one source.

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