Managing federal contaminated sites

The Federal Contaminated Sites Action Plan (FCSAP) addresses contaminated sites in Canada. FCSAP’s approach is to assess the risks to human health and the environment of each site and to allocate the resources within federal custodians to deal with the highest priority contaminated sites.

To assess and remediate contaminated sites, a 10-step process is used. The document A Federal Approach to Contaminated Sites outlines these steps. A decision-making framework also assists federal custodians and their consultants to make the most informed decisions at each step of the 10-step process.

Who pays for dealing with contaminated sites in Canada?

In Canada, the federal government promotes “the polluter pays” principle: the party responsible for producing pollution should be responsible for paying for damage to the natural environment. Private companies are usually responsible for the costs to clean up (or remediate) the land they contaminate. The provinces, territories and federal government are generally responsible for the cost to deal with contamination at the sites they own or lease.

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