A performance specification, an important intermediate step which is comparable to that required for the "environmental impact assessment", should be produced based on the historical investigation.
- The performance specification presents the status quo with the most important information gained from the historical investigation.
- The performance specification sets forth a structured program for the technical investigation. Special emphasis is to be laid on pointing out possible step-by-step approaches to the technical investigation.
As a cost savings measure it is recommended in many cases, for example, to first measure the leachate of the polluted material at the site and only then, depending on the results, conduct the expensive exploration of the groundwater. It can happen that the leachate measurements reveal that no further measures are necessary at all.
The authority in charge issues an opinion stating whether in their view sufficient grounds may be produced following the written procedures of the performance specification for the assessment of a site.
The party who is obliged to investigate is thus assured that, by following the proposed investigation programme, she will be obtaining all information demanded by the authorities and not be caught up in costly and time-consuming post-investigations, except in the case of an unexpected discovery...
Essential contents of a performance specification:
1. Description of the status quo
- Reason for and timeframe of the investigations
- Description of the site (e.g. "hot spots")
- Endangered natural resources
- Summary of the historical investigation
2. Objectives of the technical investigation, conclusions for the next steps
3. A program or procedure to use to investigate
- Exploratory methods
- Sample taking (measurement points, number of measurements)
- Analyses (methods, representativity)
4. Possibilities to break up the technical investigation into a step-by-step approach