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The Office for Product Safety & Standards (OPSS) which sits with the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has commissioned Risk & Policy Analysts (RPA), together with BWL Consulting to conduct a study to develop its evidence base for construction products. This research will review current practices across the construction products’ supply chains and provide insight into how the supply chains operate. This research will form a baseline over which future research proposals, focusing on different aspects of the construction products supply chains, are expected to be developed.

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Study assessing the achievements of the Heritage Action Zone (HAZ) programme in England. Through the HAZ programme, Historic England works with local people and partners, including local authorities, to help breathe new life into specific places that are rich in heritage. The study assesses the achievements of the programme to date, identifying benefits, risks, issues and lessons that could be applied for future rounds.

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Japanese knotweed (Reynoutria japonica) is recognised as one of the most pernicious invasive weeds in Europe and worldwide. The UK has legislation surrounding Japanese knotweed; however, the impacts for property sales mainly stem from lenders classing properties with Japanese knotweed 7m or closer as being ‘at risk’, as per the existing RICS framework. Furthermore, there are indications that the general public perceives Japanese knotweed to be a greater risk to property than some evidence suggests, with potential impacts for property valuations and sales. Other countries may have less stringent legislation and guidance than the UK regarding Japanese knotweed. Whilst it is treated as an invasive weed, the majority of removal projects aim to reduce the environmental impacts. The Parliamentary Science and Technology Committee held a one-off oral evidence session in early 2019 to explore the science behind the effects of Japanese knotweed on the built environment. The report produced following the session included several recommendations, one of which was a desk-based research study to review international approaches to Japanese knotweed in the context of property sales.

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RPA and RPA Europe have been commissioned by the European Environment Agency (EEA) to map the current and future regulatory status of the 19 HBM4EU Priority Substance Groups and to produce policy briefs detailing the progress made so far under the HBM4EU project by reviewing available human biomonitoring evidence, the ability of HBM4EU to produce new human biomonitoring evidence and how this data can be fed into chemicals policy and risk management.

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