Dear Colleagues,

The CF spring meeting 2019 in Luxembourg has been fruitful on several important issues (background values, diffuse soil pollution, discussions on strengthening European Soil Policy). Meeting presentations as well as the meeting report are now available on the network website.

Safe the date for the CF fall meeting in October 22, 2019 in Lima (Perú), back to back to the 14th ICCL meeting with the main topics:

  • Economic aspects of the management of contaminated sites
  • Sustainably managing mining sites
  • Challenges and solutions in implementing the UN Minamata Convention
  • New policy objectives and responses in Contaminated Land Management

Before this meeting at the international level, several events will take place with contributions of COMMON FORUM members e.g. the Wageningen Soil Conference (27 – 30 August 2019) and REMTECH Europe 2019 (18 – 20 September 2019).

Enjoy the summer time and looking forward to meeting you at one of the events and in Lima.

Kind regards
Martha and Dietmar


Next COMMON FORUM Network meeting will be held in

Lima, Perú
22 October, 2019

as a pre-meeting to the 14th ICCL meeting

Thank you to the COMMON FORUM members and special guests for their participation and for the fruitful discussion during the

meeting in Lëtzebuerg, Luxembourg

on 8 – 10 May, 2019

Presentations and meeting report of the CF meeting and WG Soil as a Resource meeting are available.

Recent changes / new members of representations within the COMMON FORUM:

From Countries:

  • France – February 2019:
    - Christian Vincq to temporarily replace Antoine Billard
    French Ministry for the Environment, the Energy and the Sea

  • Germany – June 2019:
    - Markus Raffelsiefen to temporarily replace Andreas Bieber
    German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety

A warm welcome!

European Soil Data Centre (ESDAC) - Newsletter

ESDAC Newsletter No.117 (April – May 2019) -

UNEP Outlines Integrated Actions to Tackle Soil Pollution in Preparation for UNEA-4

The 3rd session of the UN Environment Assembly (UNEA-3) adopted a resolution requesting member States and relevant UN bodies to explore ways to address soil pollution in a more integrated manner. In this resolution 3/6 titled, ‘Managing Soil Pollution to Achieve Sustainable Development’, UNEA called for a report on the extent and future trends of soil pollution, considering both point source contamination and diffuse pollution and on the risks and impacts of soil pollution on health, the environment and food security, including land degradation and the burden of disease resulting from exposure to contaminated soil.

A progress report by UNEP presented to UNEA-4 highlights the convening of the Global Symposium on Soil Pollution in May 2018 and details some follow-up activities taken in the intersessional period to promote such integrated actions. UNEA-4 convened under the theme, ‘Innovative Solutions for Environmental Challenges and Sustainable Consumption and Production,’ from 11-15 March 2019, in Nairobi, Kenya. [ Progress in the Implementation of Resolution 3/6 on Managing Soil Pollution to Achieve Sustainable Development]

The report also draws attention to a complementary UNEP-led global nitrogen assessment project funded by the GEF that will focus on the impacts of forms of reactive nitrogen in the environment, including within soils.

Assessment of the global status and regional trends of soil pollution

The Global Soil Partnership, with the support of its Intergovernmental Technical Panel on Soils and the Regional Soil Partnerships, and in collaboration with UN Environment and WHO, proposes to conduct a detailed study of soil pollution worldwide by collecting basic information such as policies to prevent, control and remedy soil pollution; the number and extent of polluted sites; the identification and location of potentially polluting activities. This approach will help to better understand the problem of soil pollution on a global scale and identify the main knowledge and legal gaps.

The purpose of this survey is to gather data and information which will help build a global picture of soil pollution and identify gaps and areas of intervention, will trigger national, regional and global actions.

With the feedback gained through a questionnaire sent out in March 2019 a quality report is foreseen that reflects the regional and global status of soil pollution. Findings and recommendations made in the assessment will be presented in a report at the 5th session of the United Nations Environment Assembly UNEA-5 (March 2021) where decisions will be made on future actions to address soil pollution.

14th meeting of the International Committee on Contaminated Land 2019

The 14th ICCL meeting will be held in Lima, Perú, 23-25 October 2019 hosted by the Peruvian Ministry of Environment in its capacity as Presidency to ReLASC - our Latin-American regulatory partner network for preventing and managing land contamination.

The topics of the 14th meeting are as follows:

  • Economic aspects of the management of contaminated sites: liability, liability transfer and considering the polluter-pays-principle; management tools, cost-benefit-analyses, innovative strategies for financing
  • Sustainably managing mining sites: best practices, prevention and implementing the precautionary principle; managing heavy metal contamination
  • Challenges and solutions in implementing the UN Minamata Convention
  • New policy objectives and responses in Contaminated Land Management: UN Sustainable Development Goals; Climate change mitigation

The last day of the meeting will be dedicated to workshops or training sessions targeted to specified actual topics e.g.

  • Conceptual Site Models for improving risk assessment and management
  • How to consider new/revised toxicity data
  • Projects to manage POP Contaminated Sites under the Stockholm Convention
  • Emerging Contaminants

The 2nd announcement is online.

Call for contributions to the meeting (presentations, workshop and/or training sessions) is open.

The deadline for the call for presentations is July 31, 2019, for the call for workshops or training sessions September 11, 2019.

NICOLE Fall Workshop 2019 – Call for Abstract

The NICOLE fall workshop on risk assessment (European Policy and best practice application) will be held from 7 – 8 November 2019 in Warsaw, Poland.

The host country for the workshop, Poland, has recently introduced risk-based legalisation. This presents an ideal opportunity for the network to reflect on the current status of risk assessment policy across Europe.

  • Are risk-based policies becoming more or less common?
  • How does this sit alongside the objectives of the EU directives that are relevant to soil and groundwater contamination?
  • Do we have examples of progressive risk assessment policy approaches being applied?

NICOLE Fall workshop - Call for Abstract information

Investigation of Pesticides:
Degradation and leaching of bentazone, terbuthylazine and S-metolachlor and some of their metabolites: A long-term lysimeter experiment

Schuhmann A., Klammler G., Weiss S., Gans O., Fank J., Haberhauer G., Gerzabek M.H. (2019): Plant Soil Environ., 65: 273-281.

The use of pesticides to increase agricultural production continues to be an important topic for environmental research. Once applied to the field, pesticides can be degraded by the influence of physical, chemical and biological factors, volatilized, adsorbed by soil colloids and transported through surface runoff and leaching. Bentazone, terbuthylazine, and S-metolachlor are important herbicides applied to maize and other crops to control pre-emergence or early post-emergence broadleaf and grass weeds. The degradation and leaching of those herbicides in the soil-water-plant-system were investigated using a weighable, monolithic lysimeter.

The leachates were analysed over a five years period. In conclusion, S-Metolachlor and the metabolites Metoalchlor-ESA, Metolachlor-OA, as well as Desethyl-Terbuthylazin where detected. Whereas bentazone, terbuthylazine, N-methyl-bentazone, and 2-hydroxy-terbuthylazine were not detected in leachate. In soil, the metabolisation was detected in varying soil depths.

The importance of analysing both parent compounds and metabolites on a long-term scale was demonstrated to better understand the environmental fate and transport.

New documents on EUGRIS, the platform for European contaminated soil and water information. Resources, events projects and news items added on EUGRIS can be viewed at: www.eugris.info/whatsnew.asp. Then select the appropriate month and year for the updates in which you are interested. However, here is a selection of new additions to EUGRIS in 2019 prepared by Paul Bardos (r3 Environmental Technology Ltd) for COMMON FORUM members.

PFAS Wanted: TOP-assay experience

The Danish Regions are looking for experience on use of the TOP assay on PFAS compounds. They have been using the method for about a year. In some cases the method works as expected. But in other the results are strange.

What is your experience with the TOP assay method?

Please contact: nit@regioner.dk

Call for Interest: Organisations interested to host SustRem 2020

Sustainable Remediation of contaminated sites has been continuously evolving in the last decade as a response to a growing global, public and industry environmental awareness, social pressure and resource scarcity. During this timeframe, broader, more holistic concepts have now developed that consider sustainable land management and stewardship.

Under the co-ordinated organisation led by internationally acknowledged entities (NICOLE, COMMON FORUM, CL:AIRE and various SuRF chapters worldwide - now grouped under the International Sustainable Remediation Alliance, ISRA), the first SustRem Conference was held in Denmark in 2009, followed by Austria in 2012, Italy in 2014, Canada in 2016 and Brazil in 2018.

A Call for Interest to host the next Sustainable Remediation conference, likely in 2020/21 is launched. Potentially interested organisations (Universities, National or international associations and fora) should submit a Letter of Interest by no later than August 30th 2019, outlining: proposed conference inspirational values and programme, organising committee, venues and critical logistical aspects, synergy with other events, expected participation, partnerships and supporting entities.

Following selection of received applications (to be based upon evaluation of the above aspects), the successful hosting organisation will be accompanied by standing members of the SustRem Committee from NICOLE, COMMON FORUM and ISRA, to leverage gained experience and support consistency towards the planning and delivery of a high quality event.

Expressions of interest can be sent to: Nicola Harries (nicola.harries@claire.co.uk)

Animation on Sustainable Remediation by SuRF-UK

CLAIRE SuRF UK Sustainable Remediation explained in English, subtitles have also been translated into many languages including Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Turkish, Chinese, Malaysian, Arabic, Hungarian, Indonesian, Polish and Russian, Japanese.


SOILveR Pilot Call

SOILveR (Soil and Land Research funding platform for Europe) is launching its first pilot call with overarching theme "Recognizing and caring for soil and land as assets". Two topics were targeted:

  • Topic 1: Emerging contaminants in point sources and as diffuse pollution in soil and groundwater
  • Topic 2: Recognizing the value of soil in land use decision

There are 2 submission steps. The deadline for the first step is September 27th, and November 29th 2019 for the second step.

All available information on www.soilver.eu

For further questions, please contact your national contact (see applicants guide) or join an online / telephone Q&A session on Friday July 5th 2019, 9.00 – 10.00 hrs. Send an e-mail (before 4th of July 23.59 hrs.) to info@soilver.eu and you will receive the information to join the meeting.

Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Emerging Characterization and Remedial Technologies

This is part of a webinar featuring presentations to identify and discuss the emerging science behind PFAS characterization and remedial technologies. This webinar included a presentation on ‘What are PFAS?’, and ‘What are the Issues with Them?’ as well as ‘Treatment Technologies for PFAS Site Management’. To replay the archived webinar, visit https://clu-in.org/conf/tio/FRTRPresents5_062019/.


Cooperative Research Centre for Contamination Assessment and Remediation of the Environment (CRC CARE), Australia. 44 pp, 2018

The purpose of this guide is to provide information on bioremediation as a treatment technology for the remediation of contaminated sites to assist with selection of remediation options. The document contains information to inform remediation planning and aid compilation of a remediation action plan. While soil, groundwater, and vapor are all able to be bioremediated, this document predominantly provides guidance on the application of bioremediation as a remediation technology to treat contaminated soil. This guide is primarily intended to be utilized by remediation practitioners and those reviewing practitioner's work; however, it can be utilized by other stakeholders within the contaminated sites industry, including site owners, proponents of works, and the community.

See this guide and others that CRC CARE is developing as part of a National Remediation Framework to provide practical guidance to practitioners and regulators in Australia. The files are posted near the bottom of https://www.crccare.com/knowledge-sharing/national-remediation-framework.


CL:AIRE technical bulletins describe specific techniques, practices and methodologies currently being employed on sites in the UK. This bulletin provides a summary of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) and highlights approaches to manage risks and liabilities associated with their impact to the environment.

View or download at https://www.claire.co.uk/component/phocadownload/category/17-technical-bulletins?download=668:tb-19-managing-risks-and-liabilities-associated-with-per-and-polyfluoroalkyl-substances-pfass-2019.


D. O'Connor, D. Müller-Grabherr, D. Hou
Chemosphere, Volume 225, June 2019, Pages 295-303

The Green and Sustainable Remediation (GSR) movement demands informed, integrated, and holistic management of contaminated sites. As such, GSR may become increasingly relevant in developing countries such as China, where vast areas of contaminated land require clean-up. Among other efforts, the World Bank together with China's Foreign Economic Cooperation Office is facilitating GSR adoption through the development of a guideline on social-environmental management. However, there are no existing studies that have considered how the established remediation industry perceives its effectiveness in addressing the various social-environmental management aspects, or how certain aspects have rooted. Without this information, it may be difficult to guide social-environmental practice forward, or introduce GSR into developing remediation markets with any precision. Therefore, a questionnaire survey of remediation participators was undertaken with principal component analysis (PCA) applied to the data to help group the various aspects. The PCA extracted two components for environmental management, ascribed to: (1) on-site/local impacts; and, (2) widespread impacts, and three social management components, ascribed to: (1) community inclusion; (2) economic gain; and, (3) health, safety, and welfare. It was found that the aspects with which the industry are most familiar historically are generally dealt with more effectively than those that have only recently been introduced by the GSR movement. In particular, bolstering the management of widespread environmental impacts and giving greater regard to the economic gain of remediation, may be beneficial. In developing countries, public engagement is often very limited, necessitating improvement in remediation policy and guidance.



Pac, T.J., J. Baldock, B. Brodie, J. Byrd, B. Gil, K.A. Morris, D. Nelson, J. Parikh, et al. Remediation 29(2):75-91(2019)

This paper compiles a detailed set of in situ chemical oxidation (ISCO) lessons learned pertaining to design, execution, and safety based on global experiences over the last 20 years. While the benefits of a correct application are known, history also provides examples of a variety of incorrect applications that provide an opportunity to highlight recurring themes that resulted in failures. This paper combines a thorough discussion of lessons learned through decades of ISCO implementation throughout all aspects of ISCO projects with an analysis of changes to the ISCO remediation market. By discussing the interplay of these two themes and providing recommendations from collective lessons learned, the future of safe, cost-effective, and successful applications of ISCO can be improved.



Woodard, S. | RemTEC Summit, February 26-28, 2019, Denver, Colorado

A 200-gpm regenerable ion exchange (IX) resin system was installed in spring 2018 to remove PFAS from groundwater at the Royal Australian Air Force Base Williamtown. The system includes pretreatment filtration to remove suspended solids, IX resin to remove fouling agents (including iron and natural organic matter), specialized IX resins for PFAS removal, and an in-vessel regeneration process used to strip PFAS from the IX resin. Influent concentrations to the full-scale system range from 18 to 410 ?g/l. More information:



Smith, J.W.N. | Remediation 29(2):7-15(2019)

With the recent publication of ISO Standard 18504 and the benefit of a decade's worth of hindsight on sustainable remediation programs implementation and project delivery, this paper summarizes myths and misunderstandings that have been stated regarding sustainable remediation and seeks to debunk them. In dispelling some of the myths about sustainable remediation set out in this paper, it is hoped that consistent application of ISO18504/SuRF-UK (or equivalently robust guidance) will facilitate even wider use of sustainable remediation around the world. This article is Open Access at https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1002/rem.21587. ISCO18504 document https://www.iso.org/obp/ui/#iso:std:iso:18504:ed-1:v1:en. See slide for more information http://seminario.ekosbrasil.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/5_Session-1_Nicola-Harries.pptx.pdf

See all announcements on COMMON FORUM website

The COMMON FORUM on Contaminated Land, initiated in 1994, is a network of contaminated land policy makers and advisors from national ministries in European Union memberstates and European Free Trade Association countries.