Soil Protection and Contaminated Sites
Rehabilitation - Technical Documents
Reports and inventory
The MELCC makes reports, including general and/or specific statistics on
the management of sites that have been contaminated by anthropic activity,
available to the public. Data in the reports comes from the
Système de gestion des terrains contaminés (GTC), the
Répertoire des dépôts de sols et de résidus industriels (DSRI) and
various other ministerial information systems. In general, the inventoried
sites are selected on the basis of contaminant levels found during
characterization that exceed the values listed in Schedule I of the
Protection and Rehabilitation Regulation (or criterion B of the
Guide d’intervention – Protection des sols et de réhabilitation des terrains
The reports shed light on a variety of facts and issues that can affect
the land. However, whenever the data shown is partial in nature, care must
be taken in interpretation.
Inventory evolution of Gerled industrial residue landfills from 1983 to
This publication sets out the restructuring of the inventory, taking
account of the evolution of industrial residue landfills during that period
of time. It is available from the MELCC by submitting a
request for access to documents.
Guides and Guidelines
Soil and underground water
Notice to readers
The current PDF document is a facsimile of the 2003
Guide de caractérisation des terrains produced by the Ministère de
l’Environnement (former name of the MELCC) and published by Les
Publications du Québec. The original publication is out-of-print and is
now available only in facsimile form online.
The guide sets out the objectives and elements that need to be taken
into account in land characterization studies, particularly in regard to
soil quality assessment and impacts on underground and surface water.
Readers will find therein the notions needed for conducting a
characterization study, as well as a description of procedures and
planning methods for such studies.
The guide is meant to be used by various land stakeholders, such as
project proponent experts, consultants, industry representatives, owners,
municipalities and financial institutions.
Guide to the physicochemical characterization of initial
soil state prior to the establishment of an industrial
This publication sets out the objectives of
characterization studies and the elements that need to be
taken into account to determine the state of a given parcel
of land prior to the planned industrial activity.
Information gathered during the characterization process
enables the project proponent to have a record of the
initial state of the soil prior to future changes resulting
from any potential impacts of the project.
- Environmental Analysis Sampling Guide
These guides describe planning and sampling best practices
aimed at ensuring quality control and the validity of
derivative scientific information.
Analysis of groundwater quality monitoring results (French, PDF,
The purpose of this information sheet is to clarify the
expectations of the Ministère with respect to groundwater
quality monitoring analysis and, in particular, comparison
and trend parameters.
Safe and Responsible Operation of High Risk Petroleum Equipment
This fact sheet was prepared in co-operation with the Régie du bâtiment du Québec. It summarizes the principal regulations and obligations that apply prior to; during; and/or after the use of high-risk petroleum equipment. The fact sheet is intended for owners and operators of this type of equipment and for consultants whose role is to provide support for any environmental rehabilitation steps that are required once the equipment has been shut down.
Guidelines for Assessing Natural Background
Concentrations in Soil (2012 -
This publication sets out the acceptable methods for
differentiating the natural and anthropic concentrations of
metals and metalloids found in soil.
The guidelines enable the correct assessment of natural
background concentrations in a potentially contaminated site
and facilitate the implementation of the
Protection and Rehabilitation Regulation.
List of Suggested Methods for Conducting Laboratory
This list is a compilation of analytical methods recommended
by the MELCC for the chemical characterization of soil and
groundwater samples. It replaces the 1990 edition and the
1996 update to the Guide des méthodes de conservation et
d’analyse des échantillons d’eau et de sol.
Methodology for calculating the efficiency of a process for physically
segregating metallic and non-metallic contaminated soils or sediments (French,
This publication offers a characterization methodology that enables the
assessment of soil and/or sediment treatability and the calculation of the
efficiency of physical segregation of particles and related contaminants.
The main objective here is to precisely quantify contaminant distribution so
as to maximize the reclamation of fractions that have little or no
contamination. The methodology is intended for departmental analysts and
experts in the field of contaminated soil and sediment treatment.
- Selecting parameters for analyzing oil-contaminated soil and groundwater (1993)
In addition to technical information on the physicochemical characteristics
of commercial petroleum products, this document recommends a standardized
approach to characterization and management of hydrocarbon-contaminated soil
and groundwater, for use by laboratories and consultants.
Available from the MELCC online under Access
to documents (French).
Rehabilitation of contaminated sites
Trees and Shrubs to be Used to Vegetate Rehabilitated Sites
Subject to Risk Assessment (French,
This document is intended for experts in contaminated site
rehabilitation. It focuses in particular on the vegetation
of contaminated sites that will undergo risk assessment,
sets out the various factors affecting root development and
provides a selection of trees and shrubs to use or reject
for the vegetation of these sites. It also presents
additional mitigation measures that can be implemented in
this context in order to meet the requirements of the
Technical Assessment Group (GTE).
Guide for the Treatment of Soil by Biodegradation,
Bioventing and/or Volatilization (1999
This document sets out MELCC requirements for the
demonstration stages and large-scale use of soil
biodegradation, bioventing and/or volatilization
Management and traceability of soil,
contaminated sediment and residual materials originating from
Safe, Responsible Practice Governing the Reception of Soils on Farmland
This reminder was produced in collaboration with the Commission de protection du territoire agricole du Québec to ensure the quality of farmlands and the rehabilitation and safe reuse of soils in Québec. It summarizes the key obligations to be met to accept soils on farmland and is intended for farmers, agronomists and the consultants who guide them in the authorization process.
Guide for the application of the Regulation respecting contaminated soil storage and contaminated soil transfer stations
This guide is intended for use by project managers at regional MELCC offices and by experts in the field of contaminated soils. It details the objectives of the regulation and the reasons behind its implementation so as to permit better understanding and foster its coherent application.
Guidelines for the management of residual materials
and contaminated soil treated by stabilization and
This publication, used by MELCC personnel, serves for the
process of approving and checking the compliance of residual
materials and contaminated soil stabilization and
solidification projects. It details the methods to be used
in the assessment of long-term efficacy of chemical and
physical immobilization of contaminants found in
contaminated residual materials and soils treated by
stabilization and solidification. The assessment framework
varies on the basis of the anticipated scenario: limited
use, disposal or on-site maintenance. It replaces the
(French only) Guide to the management of hazardous matter
treated by stabilization and solidification.
Best Contaminated Excavated Soil Traceability
This publication sets out the best contaminated excavated
soil traceability practises recognized by the MELCC.
Implementing these practices enables managers of
contaminated sites to voluntarily report their exemplary
behaviour in meeting responsible soil management regulations.
Criteria for the Assessment of Sediment Quality in
Quebec and Application Frameworks: Prevention, Dredging and
This publication was prepared jointly by Environment Canada
and the MELCC. It provides the criteria for assessing the
quality of contaminated sediment, as well as a management
framework. The publication replaces the Interim criteria for
quality assessment of St. Lawrence River sediment (1992).
The new criteria are based on the approach selected in 1995
by the Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment and
meet the needs of sediment management in various contexts
found in Québec.
Guidelines for the Management of Concrete, Brick and
Asphalt Originating in Construction, Demolition and Residue
From the Cut Stone Industry
(2009 - French, PDF,
These guidelines are used by MELCC personnel in the approval
and compliance checking process of warehousing, packaging
and utilization of concrete, brick and asphalt originating
in construction, demolition and residue from the cut-stone
industry. Among other information provided, the document
sets out the possibilities and conditions for the
utilization, warehousing and packaging of residues on the
basis of their particular characteristics and those of the
receiving environment, as well as the applicable regulatory
and legislative framework.
Treated Lumber Management Guidelines
(2011 - French, PDF,
These guidelines cover the management of materials made from treated lumber,
based on the characteristics of the products used and their environmental
impact. They apply to the storage, recycling, reuse and energy recovery of
treated lumber, whether the materials are new or used. They do not supersede
any applicable regulatory obligations.
- Guide to Sound Practices in Managing Dismantling Material
The goal of this guide is to foster the appropriate management of
dismantling materials and limit their environmental impact.
The guide details each step in the dismantling process: exploratory
investigation, inventory, characterization of areas deemed to be
contaminated, dismantling and, lastly, materials management.
Available from the MELCC online under Access
to documents (French).
Contaminated soil landfill setup and management
Design, setup, control and monitoring manual for contaminated soil landfill
The guidebook completes and clarifies the requirements of the 2001 Regulation
respecting the burial of contaminated soils. The Regulation sets the
conditions and/or prohibitions that apply to building, enlarging and/or
operating a contaminated soil landfill. It also details the conditions that
must be met when closing a landfill of this type, and for post-closure
The MELCC has updated the “air” section of this guide in 2017 to incorporate
the requirements of the 2011 Clean Air Regulation.
This publication replaces the Guide d’implantation et de gestion des lieux
d’enfouissement sécuritaire (MENV, 1995).
Site evaluation based on risk analysis
Guidelines for the toxicological assessment of environment-origin risks in
(2012 - French, PDF,
Produced by the Institut national de santé publique du Québec (INSPQ), this
publication sets out the requirements of the Ministère de la Santé et des
Services sociaux with respect to assessing toxicological risk to human
health. Written in co-operation with the MELCC, the publication incorporates
the policies and regulations that are relevant to its field of application.
Guidelines for assessing ecotoxicological risks to human health (2002 - French, PDF,
This publication sets out the policy framework that regulates the assessment
of toxicological risk to human health. It is a companion publication to the
previously-mentioned guidelines. The text was written in co-operation with
the MELCC and incorporates the policies and regulations that are relevant to
its field of application. It is available from the Institut national de
santé publique du Québec, Suite 200, 4835 Avenue Christophe-Colomb,
Montréal, QC H2J 3G8 (514-597-0606).
Ecotoxicological risk assessment procedure for the rehabilitation of
contaminated sites (1998 - French,
This document describes procedures and phases in the assessment of ecosystem
risk and sets out the MELCC requirements for such assessments.