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2020 / 2021 Edition

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Soil-forming Materials: Their Use in Land Reclamation

The Stationery Office, on behalf of the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions, has published a report entitled Soil-forming materials: their use in land reclamation.

DETR's Minerals, Land Instability and Waste Management Programme funded the research which was carried out by Wye College, University of London, in association with the Forest Research, Forestry Commission.

The report provides comprehensive guidance to assist with the reclamation of old mineral workings where the original soil resource has been lost or depleted. It is particularly relevant to mineral workings being reviewed under the Environment Act 1995.

The study concentrated on the potential for using waste materials commonly associated with mineral workings (such as quarry wastes and colliery shale) to develop soil. It was recognised that to produce a material that could support vegetation in both the short and long term, it was necessary to combine it with suitable organic amendments. The study considered the range of amendments available (which include materials such as composted green wastes). Guidance is provided on the treatment, handling and use of both the soil-forming materials and the various amendments. Guidelines on the minimum standards appropriate for the range of possible uses of reclaimed land are also provided.

 

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