Cemetery Groundwater Risk Assessment
The production of a cemetery risk assessment report is required by the Environment Agency during the course of planning any proposed cemetery. Environmental regulators are now requiring that existing burial grounds undergo risk assessment, in addition to the assessments carried out for new burial grounds and burial ground extensions.
Hydrogeo has experience in undertaking desk studies, site investigations and groundwater risk assessments for numerous natural burial grounds and cemetery developments.
Hydrogeo can assist in the planning of Cemetery / Memorial Ground / Natural Burial sites, including the preparation of a Cemetery Risk Assessment. Planning requires early consideration of possible impacts and where appropriate, adequate site investigation and risk assessment proportionate to both the level of potential risk to water resources and the size of the proposed development.
Our Risk Assessment approach follows the three-tiered assessment advocated within the Environment Agency Technical Report, P223 ‘Assessing the Groundwater Pollution Potential of Cemetery Developments’:
Tier 1: Risk Screening –Desk based assessment detailing the (water) environmental setting of the site, proposed development, identification and assessment of potentially sensitive (water) receptors and a qualitative assessment of vulnerability and risk. A Tier 1 investigation is only suitable for ‘low risk’ sites.
Tier 2: Preliminary Quantitative Risk Assessment – A detailed desk study covering the information listed in the Tier 1 assessment as well as a preliminary site investigation to support the information found within the desk study. This tier is considered when a site is designated as an ‘Intermediate Risk’ to a (water) receptor, or where risks are not clearly defined. Tier 2 requires an appropriate degree of intrusive works (boreholes or trial pits) to characterize soil / geology, prove groundwater levels, determine groundwater quality and to install monitoring points if required. This tier requires a basic or semi-quantitative risk assessment to whether potential impacts are acceptable and to enable measures/design to be implemented to mitigate risk.
Tier 3: Detailed Quantitative Groundwater Risk Assessment – Tier 3 is required if the risk to sensitive (water) receptors is considered to be high or if further information is requested by the Environment Agency. Tier 3 comprises a Tier 2 assessment supplemented with groundwater modelling. Hydrogeo uses ConSim software to quantify the risk to the water environment in a groundwater risk assessment.