Amendment to the Record of Site Condition (Brownfields) Regulation related to the Requirement to Sample Ground Water
Regulation - LGIC
Bill or Act:
Environmental Protection Act, R.S.O. 1990
Summary of Proposal:
Ontario is proposing changes to O. Reg. 153/04 that would provide flexibility for a qualified person (a licensed professional engineer or geoscientist) to exercise professional judgement regarding the need for ground water testing where there is no soil on, in or under the property and soil sampling completed does not meet the requirements and objectives of a phase two environmental site assessment with respect to soil, with some limitations and requirements.
The proposed amendment would reduce barriers to redevelopment of brownfields, putting vacant, prime land back to good use.
We are delivering on our Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan commitment to increase redevelopment and revitalization of brownfields.
This amendment would provide flexibility in certain situations for sites requiring a phase two environmental site assessment (phase two ESA) to be completed in order to file a record of site condition and all the soil down to the bedrock surface has been removed from the site. In this situation, the current regulation, subsection 6(3) of Schedule E, requires the analysis and sampling of ground water as part of the site investigation of a phase two ESA if the previously completed investigations do not meet the requirements of a Phase two ESA with respect to soil.
It is proposed that a new subsection be added to section 6 of Schedule E, indicating that despite the requirements to sample and analyze ground water set out in the regulation, the qualified person would not be required to sample and analyze ground water if specified conditions are met based on limited results of analyses and professional opinion.
Analysis of Regulatory Impact:
The proposed amendment to O. Reg. 153/04 would positively impact property owners or businesses involved in the redevelopment of brownfield properties that are submitting a Record of Site Condition for filing on the Ministry's Environmental Site Registry.
The proposed amendment provides some flexibility for appropriate sites based on an acceptable rationale and certification. This may lower costs associated with unnecessary sampling and remove delays in the Record of Site Condition and redevelopment process.
There would be a marginal administrative cost for qualified persons to become familiar with the regulatory amendment to gain clarity on how the ministry expects them to be applied. The Ministry would provide outreach that aligns with the filing of the regulatory amendments to efficiently communicate Ministry expectations and to minimize any costs to qualified persons.
December 9, 2019
Comments Due Date:
January 13, 2020