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InJörgens, H.; Lenschow, A.; Liefferink, D. (ed.), Understanding environmental policy convergence? The power of words, rules and money, pp. 175-208
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Jörgens, H.; Lenschow, A.; Liefferink, D. (ed.), Understanding environmental policy convergence? The power of words, rules and money
SubjectShaping and Changing of Places and Spaces
Policies for the remediation of contaminated sites emerged relatively late as a subfield of environmental protection. The policy area is adjacent to other policies, such as waste policy, which often includes provisions on how to deal with waste dumps, as well as soil and groundwater protection policies, which deal with the prevention of contamination. Nevertheless, most countries introduced policies for the clean-up of contaminated sites in the course of the 1990s while only a handful already tackled this issue in the 1980s. The policies on contaminated land developed initially at the domestic level. Although in a few cases contaminated sites gained international attention, such as the Love Canal in the USA and Lekkerkerk in the Netherlands, contaminated soil was considered a local problem and the responsibility of national (or subnational) governments. At the EU level up to today, national insistence on the subsidiarity principle prevented agreement on common regulations. Similarly, at the wider international level, we find no binding or non-binding international law or agreements on the remediation of contaminated sites. However, several transnational networks have emerged that have played a role in the international convergence process of contaminated sites policy (see Section 6.3).
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