LQM is a specialist environmental consultancy based in Nottingham (UK) with an international reputation for assessing and managing the risks posed to human health and the environment by contaminants in soil. Increasingly this is being done within a context of sustainable development and specifically sustainable brownfield regeneration.

We provide consultancy, peer review and expert witness services, contract research and training courses on all aspects of the management of land contamination to problem holders, developers and local government.

Locations of visitors to this page

Mailing List

If you would like us to email you updates, such as detail of forthcoming training etc., please subscribe below.


Use of Bioavailability Estimates for Human Health Risk Assessment in the UK (with lab tour)

The British Geological Survey (BGS) and Land Quality Management Ltd (LQM) have a long history of working together to apply contaminant bioavailability to human health risk assessment. This is the first jointly delivered course and offers delegates the chance to visit the BGS laboratories where the new ISO 17924:2018 method was developed.  Places are limited to 18 but if there is enough demand we will run the course again on 3 April 2019.

Using the total contaminant concentration in your risk assessments can result in overly conservative risk evaluations and hence additional costs (unnecessary and unsustainable remediation), development delay or blight. Understanding how to use contaminant bioavailability estimates in the UK risk assessment process is key to avoiding over-estimating risks.

LQM and BGS staff have pioneered the practical use of and been actively involved in research associated with the bioaccessibility of metals since well before the first Environment Agency oral bioaccessibility reports were published in 2002. From housing developments, riparian allotments, former gas works, borrow pits through to upland metalliferous mines LQM have successfully applied oral bioaccessibility results to the regulatory decision process, especially for Lead and Arsenic and more recently benzo(a)pyrene.  LQM wrote the CIEH professional practice note to regulators and incorporated site specific bioaccessibility into the SNIFFER method.

BGS staff have been at the forefront of UK contaminant bioaccessibility research and international collaboration through the BARGE (the Bioaccessibility Research Group of Europe) network. They have been instrumental in developing the BARGE Unified Bioaccessibility Method (UBM) and harmonising the in vitro bioaccessibility method for use in human health risk assessments for contaminated soils in Europe that has recently become an international standard (ISO 17924:2018). The BGS offer analytical expertise to external clients, for a wide range of environmental matrices including routine methods, and bespoke services for challenging samples.

Lead, a common UK contaminant of increasing concern, provides a good example of where additional regulatory burden and unnecessary remediation is often the default position, due to inadequate understanding or over conservative risk evaluation.

The course will be held at the BGS Keyworth site and includes a tour of their bioaccessibility testing facilities and other relevant research capabilities.

This face to face course explores the science underpinning bioavailability tests, tests currently available, understanding the geochemical controls on bioaccessibility and how careful use of contaminant bioavailability estimates within the risk assessment process can help clarify those risks, including lead. The tour of the BGS laboratories will provide the opportunity to see the test procedure from sample receipt to analytical certificate and ask questions to demystify this important tool in the risk assessment process for a range of contaminants. It will also help to inform you of potential future developments in this field.

Training is via a series of interactive presentations and exercises, delegates will receive hands on support from the trainers and will be able to interact with other delegates.

  • Content
  • Benefits
  • Who Should Attend
  • Pricing & Buying Options
  • Testimonials

Key course contents will include:

  • Bioaccessibility science and regulatory guidance
  • Test methods for metals
  • Test methods for organics
  • Current work on dermal bioaccessibility
  • Tour of the BGS laboratory
  • Predicting benzo[a]pyrene bioaccessibility using machine learning
  • Understanding the geochemical controls on bioaccessibility using CISED
  • Use of the relative bioavailability in the CLEA model (human health risk assessment)
  • Lead bioavailability
  • Case studies - Planning and Part 2A

By the end of the course you should better understand:

  • How to evaluate sites using bioaccessibility data
  • The do’s and don’ts of using bioaccessibility data
  • Use of bioaccessibility data in practice on real sites
  • Use of bioaccessibility data for lead
  • Potential uncertainties in estimates of bioavailability
  • Different tests available
  • Laboratory practices in bioaccessibility testing (UBM method)
All delegates will be issued with a Certificate of Attendance – which should be retained and used to provide evidence of CPD activity when required by employers or professional bodies.

This course is of relevance to :

  • Regulatory and local authority staff involved with contaminated land issues
  • Consultants
  • Problem holders and developers needing a more in-depth understanding of contaminated land issues
  • Anyone producing contaminated land reports
  • Anyone reviewing third party reports
  • Anyone interested in understanding laboratory methods for bioaccessibility testing
Location Date Place Cost Places
Keyworth (BGS) (Private sector) TBC £370.00 7
Keyworth (BGS) (Public sector) TBC £170.00 2


Note: All prices exclude VAT, which we are obliged to charge at the prevailing rate

DISCOUNTS (please read carefully) *:
  1. 20% discount for orders paid by a debit orcredit card is automatically applied when selected at Paymentotherwiseselectinvoiceand pay the non-discount price.
  2. Public sector  rates only apply to qualifying organisations (i.e. Local Authorities, Health Authorities, the Environment Agency, SEPA, etc.).
  3. LQM may occasionally issue other promotions & vouchers.  Please note only one voucher can be used per order.
  4. LQM reserve the right to modify charges if the above discount rules are not followed.

*Terms and Conditions apply


Can't make these dates?  Have lots of potential delegates? Have you considered hosting this course for your staff? Or commissioning a bespoke course to meet your training needs?

Feedback comments have included:

April 2019

"BGS lab tour very informative and useful" (Consultant)

"Pace, mix of scientifc info and case studies / application were best aspects" (Consultant)

"Tour of lab to see the UBM method and updates on dermail and inhalation bioaccessibility testing were the best aspects" (Consultant)

"I liked the case studies" (Local Authority)

Other related publications, licences and courses

QGIS 2: Solving & Visualising Contaminated Land Problems using QGIS

Learn how to use QGIS to help solve contaminated land problems, undertake detailed exploratory data analysis and communicate information - not just meaningless data!

Professional Practice Webinar: PFAS Myth Buster (1.25 hours)

Professional Practice Webinar to bust some of the myths surrounding this group of emerging substances.

Technical Briefing Webinar (Ground Gases): Gas Membranes – site specific specification of appropriate gas membranes (1.25 hours)

Technical Briefing Webinar in Ground Gases on the site specific specification of appropriate gas membranes.

Introduction to the assessment and management of ground gases and vapours

Designed for beginners with little or no understanding or experience of sites impacted by ground gases (eg methand and carbon dioxide) and organic vapours, and how to assess and manage the risks they may pose. Delivered by LQM in collaboration with leading industry specialists, EPG Ltd.

Geology as a Source Pathway and Receptor

An understanding of the geological and hydrogeological conditions is vital to identifying potential contamination issues at a site and effectively managing any significant risks