This manuscript presents results from an investigation into the views of local authorities in England and Wales regarding the practical application of bioaccessibility
and constraints associated with its implementation. A majority of survey respondents (70%) perceived bioaccessibility to be a useful tool that facilitates
contaminated land management. However, the study also suggests that unless a greater commitment is made with respect to developing a standardised approach
to the use of bioaccessibility and securing it within a framework from an authoritative source, local regulators in England and Wales will continue to be cautious
or ambivalent about its use, and its potential contribution to contaminated land management may not be realised.
This research brings the voice of front-line regulators for contaminated land into the on-going discussion between policy-makers and scientists on the
uses of bioaccessibility. It goes beyond the identification of local authorities’ opinions on bioaccessibility and considers the influence of contextual
factors, such as institutional or political pressures on Officers’ views and on their decision-making.
The results of this research also have relevance beyond the UK context in that the findings draw attention to the way that understanding regulator practices
helps to identify differences in the perspectives of practitioners, policy-makers and academic researchers on the integration of emerging scientific research
into risk-based decision-making. Drawing on the insights offered by the study, it concludes by proposing action priorities both for the research community
and for policy-makers, which can be transferable to risk-based regimes elsewhere.
Title: Decision-makers' perspectives on the use of bioaccessibility for risk-based regulation
of contaminated land
Authors: Agnieszka Latawiec, Peter Simmons, Brian Reid
Environment International 36 (2010) 383–389