Background of the National Remediation Framework?

The National Remediation Framework (NRF) provides a nationally harmonised approach for the remediation and management of contaminated sites in Australia.

The NRF complements the National Environment Protection (Assessment of Site Contamination) Measure (ASC NEPM), which provides a nationally harmonised approach for the assessment of site contamination. To read more about the background to the NRF development, see NRF development process.

“HEPA is pleased to endorse the National Remediation Framework as best practice”
– Heads of EPA Australia & New Zealand, 8 November 2019

Addressing inconsistent approaches to site contamination

Issues related to remediation and management of contaminated land are common throughout Australia. Despite this, a historical lack of jurisdictional and technical consistency in procedures and best practice has compromised the effectiveness of efforts to deal with contaminated sites. The NRF addresses this problem.

This national framework for remediation and management of contaminated sites codifies existing practice and enhances guidance for best practice remediation and management. Its development has been supported by site contamination practitioners, environmental regulatory agencies, and contaminated site owners.

Harmonisation not only yields commercial benefits, but also provides governments and the public an assurance of consistency and competence in the remediation and management of contaminated sites.

Benefits of a harmonised approach

A harmonised national approach supports:

  • portability of best practice across jurisdictions
  • consistency across jurisdictions, thereby improving overall standards over time
  • cost efficiencies for remediation
  • common remediation language across jurisdictions
  • training efficiencies (including the ability to ensure that practitioners meet a recognised
  • professional standard), enhanced workforce mobility, mutual recognition of skills, and enhanced
  • recognition of the site contamination profession
  • improved certainty and confidence in remediation outcomes.

Where harmonisation was difficult to achieve, the NRF outlines common grounds for achieving the same intent.

Together with the ASC NEPM, the NRF provides a comprehensive package of nationally harmonised guidance for the assessment, remediation and management of site contamination.