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A number of regulatory regimes now require an ecological risk assessment (ERA) to be carried out. All these regimes are concerned, in one way or another, with assessing the risk of significant harm to an organism, an animal or a whole ecosystem. To ensure consistency in ERA, Defra and the EA have developed an ERA framework for use in land quality assessments.

ERA framework

The framework offers a series of tiered activities, decisions and actions that provide a practical match between available resources and the severity of a land contamination problem. It allows decisions to be made rationally, consistently and transparently and forms the basis for discussions between the relevant parties (these may include: site owners, regulatory authorities and the local community).

ERA guidance