Lea Marshes   Basketball project

Environment Agency   
To download letters referred to below click the following links.
Consultant reveal cement sheets containing asbestos were detected in three samples analysed in March/April.
Results of testing: " Sample 15 was classified as Hazardous due to elevated concentrations of metals (lead and zinc). There was no visually discernible variation in soil type at this location and consequently it would not be feasible to visually identify and segregate such materials." (This document makes the ludicrous suggestion that the soil could be hand picked to remove asbestos. It would be easier to build a full scale pyramid on the site using traditional methods.)
Original version of the following document.
Environment Agency
Cllr Ian Rathbone
London Borough of Hackney
Dear Cllr Rathbone
Our ref:NE/2011/113852/01-L02 LPA ref:2011/1560
Date:20 April 2012

Enquiry regarding the construction of a temporary basketball training venue by the Olympic Delivery Authority at Leyton Marsh, Lea Bridge Rd, London E10 7QL

Thank you for contacting us regarding the above development. We understand that you are concerned about the excavation taking place on site, and the potential for contamination in the stockpiled material to adversely affect people and the environment.

Following your email, we contacted the London Borough of Waltham Forest (LBWF) and the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) and their consultants so that we could better understand the works that have taken place on site. Internally, we referred your enquiry to our Environment Officer for Olympic development (who covers incident management and pollution prevention) and our Groundwater and Contaminated Land team.

LBWF advised us that they approved the additional excavation as a non-material amendment to the original planning permission on 5 April 2012 (LPA Ref: 2012/0359). We were not consulted on the application for an amendment.

The ODA recently provided an update by email to Environmental Health officers of local boroughs, outlining their response to local concerns which were forwarded to the Health and Safety Executive and the ODA Head of Health and Safety. A copy of the email is attached for your reference. The update referred to the results of sampling of the stockpiled material which are presented in a letter from Adrian Phillips and Jeff Widd by RSA Geotechnics to the contractor (dated 30 March 2012, Ref: AMP/13004CO/LMA).

Based on the results of the sampling (which we have also seen), the ODA concluded that the health risks to workers, engaged in working on and adjacent to the stockpiles, is negligible and that off-site the risks are too low as to be possible to calculate. The ODA outlined an ongoing management programme to deal with the stockpiled material and address any residual risks.

Our Groundwater and Contaminated Land team have also reviewed the results of the sampling of the stockpiled material to assess the risk to the water environment. They concluded that the excavated material does not represent a significant risk to the River Lea or to groundwater. Please note that LBWF will be required to consider any risks to human health (such as the presence of asbestos).

In addition, we have reviewed the works taking place in light of our regulatory duties regarding Environmental Permitting of waste activities. Our Environment Officer visited the site on 14 March 2012 to inspect the stockpiled material. After reviewing the results of the sampling of the stockpiled material, our Environment Officer today advised the contractor of the following Environmental Permitting requirements:

The treatment of asbestos would either require an Environmental Permit, or the employment of a company with a Mobile Treatment Permit to carry out the work. The re-use of treated waste on site would also require an exemption or permit. If the stockpiled material is to be removed from the site, the removal of asbestos would determine whether or not the waste was classified as hazardous or non-hazardous.

We understand that the contractor is currently in contact with removal and waste companies to find a suitable landfill or remediation facility. Our Environment Officer will remain in close contact with the contractor throughout the duration of the works.

I hope that I have answered your queries and explained our involvement with the works in more detail. If you would like to discuss any of the above, please do not hesitate to contact me at the address below.

Yours sincerely
Mr Simon Banks Planning Officer
Telephone: 020 7091 4064
E-mail: northlondonplanning@environment-agency.gov.uk
Based at: Eastbury House, Albert Embankment, London
Postal address: FAO Planning Liaison, London Team, Apollo Court, 2 Bishops Square Business Park, St Albans Road West, Hatfield, AL10 9EX