Section II.
Historical soil contamination


Subsection I.
Remediation criterion


Article 19.

1.

On land with historical soil contamination a descriptive soil examination is proceeded with if there are clear indications of serious soil contamination.

2.

On land with historical soil contamination it is proceeded with land remediation if the descriptive soil examination demonstrates the presence of serious soil contamination.

3.

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Article 20. Extra Versions

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Subsection II.
Remediation objective


Article 21.

1.

For historical soil contamination, soil remediation is targeted at preventing the soil quality from causing a risk or resulting in adverse effects on people or the environment by using the best available technologies that are not paired with excessively high costs.

In cases where the land in the context of a provisionally established draft land use plan, land-use implementation plan, or project decision is given a different use, then the soil remediation is targeted at preventing the soil quality from causing a risk or resulting in adverse effects on people or the environment within the context of this future use.

2.

If, due to the properties of the soil contamination or of the contaminated land, it is not possible to achieve the target values for soil quality by using the best available technologies that are not paired with excessively high costs, then the soil remediation shall at least be targeted at achieving soil quality which is better than that specified in the applicable soil remediation standards.

In cases where the land in the context of a provisionally established draft land use plan, land-use implementation plan, or project decision is given a use for which stricter soil remediation standards apply, then the stricter soil remediation standards shall be used as the remediation objective.

3.

The provisions of article 10, 6, are accordingly applicable.


Subsection III.
Party obligated to carry out remediation works


A. Appointment of the party obligated to carry out remediation works.

Article 22. Translation not available

B. Exemption from the decontamination obligation.

Article 23.

1.

The operator is not obligated to carry out a descriptive soil survey or the soil remediation if the OVAM is of the opinion, based on the soil file or based on the substantiated position of the operator, that the operator cumulatively complies with the following conditions:

1 the operator has not directly caused the soil contamination;
2 the soil contamination occurred before the point at which the operator began to develop the land.

If the OVAM is of the opinion, based on the soil file or based on the position, that the operator cumulatively complies with the conditions for exemption for a part of the soil contamination, then the operator is exempt from the remediation obligation for that part of the soil contamination.

The provisions of the first and second paragraphs shall also apply to the user accordingly.

2.

The owner is not obligated to carry out a descriptive soil survey or the soil remediation if the OVAM is of the opinion, based on the soil file or based on the substantiated position of the owner, that the owner cumulatively complies with the following conditions:

1 the operator has not directly caused the soil contamination;
2 the soil contamination occurred before the point at which the operator became the owner of the land;
3

the operator was not aware and could not have been aware of the soil contamination at the point at which the operator became the owner of the land. The Government of Flanders can stipulate which elements must be taken into account in the assessment of whether the owner was not aware or could not have been aware of the soil contamination at the point of acquisition.

The owner, who, although he, she, or it was aware or should have been aware of the soil contamination, acquired the contaminated land before 1 January 1993 is also not obligated to carry out a descriptive soil survey or the soil remediation if the OVAM is of the opinion, based on the soil file or based on the substantiated position of the owner, that the owner did not cause the contamination directly and that, since acquiring the land, the owner has only used it for private purposes.

If the OVAM is of the opinion, based on the soil file or based on the position, that the owner cumulatively complies with the conditions for exemption for a part of the soil contamination, then the owner is exempt from the remediation obligation for that part of the soil contamination.

3.

As a departure from the provisions of 1 and 2, the person mentioned in article 22 is still obliged to carry out the descriptive soil examination or the land remediation if the OVAM demonstrates that a legal predecessor caused the soil contamination, or that the soil contamination originated during the period in which a legal predecessor operated or used the land.

4.

All parties involved can appeal against the decision of the OVAM mentioned in 1 up to and including 3 to the Flemish Government the provisions of article 153 up to and including 155.

5.

The provisions of Article 12, 5 shall also apply accordingly.


Subsection IV.
Remediation financing


Article 24. The provisions of article 13 up to and including 15 are accordingly applicable.

Subsection V.
Liability


Article 25.

1.

The liability for the costs that are incurred in accordance with this decree for the descriptive soil survey, the sediment study, the soil remediation, and other measures, stated in Chapter VI, as well as those incurred for the damage that is caused by these activities or measures, is stipulated, in cases of historical soil contamination, in accordance with the liability rules that were applicable before 29 October 1995

2.

Responsibility for the costs and further damage mentioned in 1 that may be incurred by a person who meets the conditions mentioned in article 23, 1 or 2, based on the rules applicable before 29 October 1995, being liability established due to simple ownership or the simple monitoring of the land, is limited to the amount of costs required to prevent the soil contamination from further spreading or comprising an immediate danger.