Phase 1 Site Investigation

Phase 1 Site Investigation or Preliminary Risk Assessment (Desk Studies) are an integral and founding part of the site investigation process.  They are used to create a preliminary Conceptual Site Model (CSM) in order to identify any potential pollutant linkages.  The CSM is then refined and conclusions and recommendations are provided.

The desk study process involves putting together a picture of a sites environmental setting by collating site specific data and information which includes the geology, hydrogeology, hydrology, site history, mining & quarrying, landfill & waste, and any regulatory concerns from statutory bodies such as the Local Authority and the Environment Agency. This allows our team of Environmental Consultants to build a picture of a site by identifying any potentially significant features such as potential contamination sources, pathways and receptors, and subsequent ‘pollutant linkage’; where all three must be present for a pollutant linkage to exist. If present, then further investigation would be required (see our page on Phase II Site Investigations).In addition to the above our Phase I Site Investigations also identify the anticipated ground conditions beneath any proposed buildings for geotechnical purposes.

In accordance with guidance set out in Land Contamination Risk Management (LCRM – Formerly CLR11), Guiding Principles for Land Contamination (GPLC) 1-3 and the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) states the following:

“The minimum requirement that should be provided by an applicant is the report of a Preliminary Risk Assessment and site reconnaissance (walk-over). This will, in some cases, be sufficient to develop a conceptual model of the source of contamination and pathways by which it might reach vulnerable receptors as well as the means by which the identified pollutant linkages can be broken”. Where development is proposed, the developer is responsible for ensuring that development is safe and suitable for use for the purpose for which it is intended. The developer is thus responsible for determining whether land is suitable for a particular development or can be made so by remedial action.”

GeoCon prepare all our Phase 1 Site Investigations in accordance with LCRM GPLC, NPPF, BS10175 and BS5930.

Call now to speak to one of our experienced environmental consultants to see how we can help on your project.


Phase 1 Preliminary Risk Assessments (Desk Studies)


Phase 1 site investigations for contaminated land projects are becoming more and more common due to increasing legislation at the planning stages.  All new developments now, whether full new build, rebuild, or extension will require as a minimum a Phase I Site Investigation.  If required a Phase II Site Investigation would be recommended.


GeoCon researches and collates data from third party sources such as Landmark Envirocheck, Groundsure, Local Authorities, The Environment Agency, The Coal Authority and the British Geological Survey to collate as much information relating to a particular site as possible in order to build a detailed profile of the site to determine the sites suitability for use, determine the requirement for a Phase 2 Site Investigation, and if required design a thorough ‘Targeted’ Site Investigation.


Phase 1 Site Investigations are also prepared for geotechnical projects where the requirement may not be driven by legislation but by the need to identify potential ground conditions and strata types at a site which will in turn aid the proper design of a full detailed geotechnical site investigation. Identification of both topographic and subsurface ground conditions at an early stage can highlight the requirement and selection of specific investigation techniques such as bogs mats, low bearing pressure excavators or restricted access machinery, and a choice of drilling methods such as air flush, air mist or water flush etc.





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