On December 29, 2009, with the filing of O.Reg. 511/09, the Ministry of the Environment released the long awaited amendments to Ontario’s Brownfield Regulation (O.Reg. 153/04); the principal regulation governing the preparation and filing of Records of Site Condition.

These extensive amendments direct how Brownfield sites, (generally, former industrial or commercial lands which are now vacant or underused), can be redeveloped. Highlights of the new amendments include:

  • Significant modifications to the requirements for Environmental Site Assessments;
  • New soil, ground water and sediment standards;
  • Clarification as to who is and who cannot be a "qualified person," and the introduction of conflict of interest rules for qualified persons;
  • A redefinition of the duties to be performed by qualified persons for Environmental Site Assessments;
  • A Streamlined Risk Assessment process;
  • Modifications to the content and submission process for the Record of Site Condition (RSC); and
  • A new definition of "owner of property," to include a beneficial owner of property.  

Although many of the substantive amendments do not take effect until July 1, 2011, this is an important time to determine how the new Brownfield regime may potentially impact your property or your business.