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RSK launches brownfield site investigation course


Environmental consultancy RSK has developed an introductory brownfield site investigation e-learning course with Cl:aire.

Cl:aire, who lead a national programme of technical and core-skills training initiatives guided by industry requirements, has reviewed the course which has been produced in collaboration with key stakeholders and specialists.

According to RSK, the “Introduction to brownfield site investigation” e-learning course is consistent with the National Brownfield Skills Framework (NBSF), a nationally recognised learning framework and includes the preparation, implementation, testing and presentation of information detailing the extent of contamination on a site and the impact of this on human health and the environment.

Set at an introductory level, the course’s content aligns with Level 2 of the NBSF and is for those in the early stages of their careers or new to the industry.

The course consists of 10 modules and two assessments. The first assessment is after Module 1 and the second on completion of all the modules. Each module comprises of a 15 to 30-minute video, PDF slides and a recommended reading list.

Modules include; site reconnaissance; design of the investigation; monitoring and sampling; In‐situ testing; and laboratory testing

By the end of the course, participants will be able to

  • understand the principles and purposes of a site investigation
  • know what guidance is available on-site investigation design and techniques
  • understand what a conceptual site model is and its importance in assessing land contamination
  • know how to undertake desk-based documentary research into contaminative uses and the environmental setting of the site
  • recognise the importance of site reconnaissance and what information should be acquired through one
  • understand what information is necessary to design a site investigation, including setting the objectives
  • understand the principles of conducting a site investigation, what techniques are available and the constraints that may be associated with the investigation
  • appreciate the range of site investigation methods available and their applicability, advantages and disadvantages
  • understand the techniques for sampling and monitoring as part of a site investigation
  • appreciate the value of laboratory testing for environmental and geotechnical purposes
  • demonstrate an understanding of the importance of assessing, managing and mitigating health and safety risks, including the important of underground service clearance.

Once a learner has completed all the activities and passed both assessments, they will be able to download a personalised pdf certificate.

“The management of brownfield land potentially affected by contamination involves identifying the risks arising from the presence of contaminants so that appropriate action can be taken. The redevelopment of brownfield land requires the collection of environmental and geotechnical data,” said RSK principal consultant Joanna Wilding.

“Such data should be relevant, sufficient, reliable and transparent to aid decision making. This e-learning course provides a comprehensive introduction to how this information is gathered in the process of site investigation.”


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