Site Assessment

An environmental site assessment is normally required when an application is submitted to the appropriate local council for property rezoning, sub-division, redevelopment and/or change in land use etc.

For any site, the assessment process commences with a Stage 1 and/or Stage 2 investigation. Here is an overview of what is involved for each of these two stages of an assessment. The chemicals of environmental concern for a given site will depend on the past activities/land uses that have taken place. A summary of some of the common chemical parameters that are associated with a range of site activities is also presented.

Depending on the outcome of the Stage 1/2 investigation, site clean-up of identified contaminants may be necessary. Stages 3 and 4 of the assessment process thus relate to the preparation of a site Remediation Action Plan (RAP) and validation and site monitoring, respectively.

The objectives of an RAP are to:

  • set remediation goals that ensure the site will be suitable for the proposed use and will not pose an unacceptable risk to human health or the environment;
  • document the procedures to be implemented to reduce risks to acceptable levels for the proposed site use; and
  • establish the environmental safeguards required to complete the remediation in an environmentally acceptable manner (Ref. "Guidelines for Consultants Reporting on Contaminated Sites", NSW EPA Publication 97/104, November 1997).

Where site remediation has been performed, the site must be validated to ensure that the objectives stated in the RAP have been achieved. Where full clean-up is not feasible, or on-site containment of contamination is proposed, then an ongoing monitoring program may need to be implemented (Ref. EPA, 1997).



Dr Warwick Hayes - Director
Warwick's qualifications
include a Bachelor of Science with First Class Honours from the University of Sydney, a Master of Applied Science in Environmental Toxicology and a PhD from the University of Technology, Sydney. Warwick has over seventeen years experience as an environmental scientist with particular expertise in coordinating environmental assessment projects, many of which have generated refereed publications, conference presentations and government reports. He has also been successfully audited under the NSW EPA accredited auditors scheme. Warwick has also completed the following WorkCover Authority approved courses:

  • Asbestos Removal (South Western Sydney Institute, Miller College)
  • OH&S General Induction for Construction Work in NSW.
Warwick is currently a member of various professional bodies, including:
  • Royal Australian Chemical Institute (Chartered Chemist),
  • Australian Institute of Biology,
  • Australian Professional Engineers, Scientists and Managers Association,
  • Australasian Society for Ecotoxicology.


When required, HEC works in partnership with other professional technicians to provide a wider range of project services.

  • Geoff Fraser from Fraser Carpentry Services provides specialist advice for Hazardous Materials Surveys.
  • LabMark Pty Ltd and SGS Environmental Services Pty Ltd, both of which are NATA-registered provide chemical testing.
  • Ecotox Services Australasia Pty Ltd provides specialist ecotoxicological testing.
  • Sydney Geotechnics Pty Ltd and Ability Plus provides input on geotechnical and borehole engineering issues.
  • Hydrographic & Cadastral Survey Pty Ltd provides hydrographic and land surveys