Harvest Scientific Services has assessed numerous sites for contamination during the past 20 years. These have included existing or abandoned service stations, agricultural enterprises and factory sites to name a few. In addition, the Firm has had to deal with and assess illegal dumping of contaminated waste and fill on a regular basis. This has become a serious problem throughout the State in recent times. Contamination assessments are conducted in accordance with the appropriate EPA endorsed guidelines such as:
  • National Environmental Prootection Measure (NEPM – NEPC, 2013)
  • Contaminated Sites: Sampling Design Guidelines (EPA, 1995)
  • Contaminated Sites: Guidelines for Consultants Reporting on Contaminated SItes (EPA, 1997)
  • Protection of the Environment Operations (Waste) Regulation (Excavated Natural Materials Exemption – EPA, 2012)

In general terms, sites suspected of contamination require the following phased approach:

  • Phase 1: Site Review. This entails a desktop review of previous reports, relevant historical records, published mapping data, a site “walkover” and interviews with existing and previous owners where possible. Some “judgemental” sampling may also be appropriate. Should these investigations indicate Areas of Environmental Concern (AEC) or that potential for contamination exists, a Phase 2 Assessment is conducted.
  • Phase 2: Assessment. This may entail invasive soil sampling, water sampling (surface or groundwater) and sampling of remnant structures. The sampling regime is dependent upon site conditions as well as the above guidelines which amongst other matters prescribes a specific sampling density. The assessment may reveal the need for further detailed sampling or indeed remediation in which case a Remediation Action Plan (RAP) will be required. The RAP describes the process by which a site is rehabilitated to an acceptable standard.
  • Phase 3: Site clean-up. Based on the Phase 2 results the mechanics and logistics to clean up and dispose of any identified contamination is undertaken.
  • Phase 4: Validation. The cleaned up site is tested again (more than once if necessary) to ensure that no contaminants remain. Upon completion, a report is produced certifying the property is clean and suitable for development.

Interaction with Council will be necessary during the above process, depending upon client requirements.

Harvest Scientific Services is able to assist clients with regard to any contamination issue by bring to bear its own specific expertise and where necessary, with the aid of other specialist consultants.


Old fibro clad sheds represent significant assessment and disposal issues for developers.


Many rural areas now being developed require extensive assessment for contamination.


Old fuel drums, car bodies and other refuse need to be cleaned up as part of any land development.


Household to industrial contaminated waste is often dumped on public or private land and is an increasing problem.