Assessment for site contamination

The NT EPA requires contaminated sites that pose or threaten to pose serious or material environmental harm as defined in the Waste Management and Pollution Control Act 1998 ("the Act") to be assessed in accordance with the requirements for environmental audits in the Act.

The NT EPA requires assessment of site contamination to be conducted in accordance with the National Environment Protection (Assessment of Site Contamination) Measure ("the NEPM").

The NEPM establishes a nationally consistent approach to the assessment of site contamination to ensure sound environmental management practices by the community which includes regulators, site assessors, accredited contaminated land Auditors, land owners, developers, and industry.

The NEPM, developed under section 14 of the National Environment Protection Council Act 1994, has been implemented by participating jurisdictions including the Northern Territory Government.

The NT EPA manages the assessment of site contamination for sites that threaten to pose serious or material environmental harm, or harm to human health, through an integrated framework shared between the NT EPA and the Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Logistics (DIPL).

This integrated approach is led by DIPL through the land use planning and approvals process, with input requested from the NT EPA. DIPL may request an assessment of site contamination as a condition of a Development Permit when there is a change of land use to a more sensitive use; and/or sensitive use subdivision and there is evidence of current and/or historical potentially contaminating activities. This process is described in our flowchart  PDF (440.7 KB).

Other site assessments may be initiated through investigations by:

  • the NT EPA
  • public complaints
  • reports identifying potentially contaminated sites or
  • prospective purchasers undertaking due diligence activities.

The Northern Territory Contaminated Land Guidelines PDF (2.2 MB) has been developed to describe the legislative and policy framework for the assessment and remediation of contaminated land as it applies in the Northern Territory, and to assist land managers and others with the management of contaminated land across the Northern Territory.

An assessment of site contamination may result in the issue of a Statement of Environmental Audit.

A Statement of Environmental Audit is the professional opinion of an independent, accredited Auditor experienced in assessing land contamination as to the suitability of a site, in terms of risk to human health or the environment, for current or proposed uses and may include conditions specific to a proposed land use.

An environmental audit must be conducted by a qualified person (an accredited Auditor).

Statement(s) of Environmental Audit for potentially contaminated sites assessed on the basis that they posed or threatened to pose serious or material environmental harm and were known to the NT EPA are provided below.

Other environmental audit programs may be required by the NT EPA.

View the list of contaminated site audits within the NT.

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