Edie Environmental Legislation Summary, August 06

Recent changes to legislation which will impact on the environmental sector in the UK, Europe and internationally come under the spotlight in this Semple Fraser and Edie News monthly round-up of new law and policy. Among the developments this month we look at EC regulations on shipment of waste, UK climate change agreements and reulation governing the export of nuclear material.

EC Regulation No. 1013/2006 on Shipments of Waste

EC Regulation No. 1013/2006 of the European Parliament and the Council of 14 June 2006 on the shipments of waste was published in the Official Journal of the European Union on 12 July 2006, triggering the entry into force of the new Regulation. The new Regulation therefore applies as of 12 July, on which date the provisions of Regulation No. 259/93 and Decision 94/774/EC were also repealed.

As Regulation 259/93 had been significantly amended on a number of occasions and Decision 94/774/EC regarding the standard consignment note referred to within that Regulation required to be incorporated within the Regulation, it was therefore necessary to replace Regulation 259/93 in order to achieve clarity in the legislation.

The new Regulation, which applies to shipments of waste between Member States, imports into the Community and exports from the Community to third countries, and shipments of waste in transit through the Community, on the way from and to third countries, "establishes procedures and control regimes for the shipment of waste, depending on the origin, destination and route of shipment, the type of waste shipped and the type of treatment to be applied to the waste at its destination".

Where Regulation 259/93 previously grouped the categories of waste types into green, amber and red listed wastes, the new Regulation has now merged the former Annexes III and IV into one Annex. The new Regulation therefore sets out the list of "green" wastes in Annex III, which are subject to the general information requirements in Article 18 of the Regulation, while Annex IV list the "amber" wastes, which are subject to the procedure of prior written notification and consent.

The full Regulation can be found at the following link.

UK LEGISLATION

UK Wide

The Export of Radioactive Dests (Control) Order 2006

The Export of Radioactive Dests (Control) Order 2006 was laid before Parliament on 12 July 2006 and will come into force on 1 October 2006. The Order controls the export of certain high-activity radioactive sources, prohibiting (except under licence) the export of certain radioactive sources, as described in Schedule 1 to the Order.

The prohibition set out in Article 3(1) of the Order does not however apply to controlled radioactive sources in transit, provided a number of conditions are met.

Articles 5, 6, 7 and 8 of the Order set out the provisions in respect of the grant of licences to export radioactive sources, the requirements in respect of record keeping and the procedure for appealing against the refusal of a licence application.

Articles 9 and 10 make provision in respect of misleading applications for licences and failure to comply with licence conditions. Under Article 11, the Commissioners of Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs, are granted the power to require evidence of the destination to which the controlled radioactive source was delivered.

Provision is also made regarding offences as, under the Customs and Excise Management Act 1979, it shall be an offence to breach the control on export, for which a maximum penalty of 10 years imprisonment may be imposed.

See link to OPSI website.

The Climate Change Agreements (Eligible Facilities) (Amendment) Regulations 2006

The Climate Change Agreements (Eligible Facilities) (Amendment) Regulations 2006 were laid before the House of Commons on 19 July 2006 and will come into force on 15 August 2006. The Regulations replace the Schedule to the Climate Change Agreements (Eligible Facilities) Regulations 2006 with a new Schedule, which adds new descriptions of relevant processes and activities carried out at an installation or a site upon which there is an installation which are relevant for the purposes of determining whether such installation or site is to be taken to be a facility that is eligible for inclusion in a climate change agreement.

See link to OPSI website.

The Climate Change Agreements (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2006

The Climate Change Agreements (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2006 were made on the 11 July 2006. The Regulations amend the Table in paragraph 51 of Schedule 6 to the Finance Act 2000 in order to take account of amendments to Schedule 1 of the Pollution Prevention and Control (England and Wales) Regulations 2000 and certain omissions.

The Regulations also amend the Climate Change Agreements (Energy-intensive Installations) Regulations 2006. Regulation 3 amends the Schedule to the Climate Change Agreements (Energy-intensive Installations) Regulations 2006, in order to extend the types of installations that may form a facility taken as being covered by a climate change agreement to include any installation not otherwise covered by paragraph 51 of Schedule 6 to the Finance Act 2000.

In order for installations to be taken to be facilities that are eligible for inclusion in climate change agreements they must meet the criteria set out in the Climate Change Agreements (Eligible Facilities) Regulations 2006.

See link to OPSI website.

The Offshore Installations (Safety Zones) (No. 3) Order 2006

The Offshore Installations (Safety Zones) (No.3) Order 2006 was made on 18 July 2006 and is due to come into force on 8 August 2006. The Order establishes, under section 22 of the Petroleum Act 1987, safety zones having a radius of 500 metres from the point around each installation specified in the Schedule and stationed in waters to which section 21(7) of the Act applies (these include territorial waters and waters in areas designated under section 1(7) of the Continental Shelf Act 1964.

Vessels (which include hovercraft, submersible apparatus and installations in transit) are prohibited from entering or remaining in a safety zone except with the consent of the Health and Safety Executive or in accordance with regulations made under section 23(1) of the Act (currently the Offshore Installations (Safety Zones) Regulations 1987).

See link to OPSI website.

England

There have been no items of legislation relating to the environment introduced this month, which are applicable in England only.

England and Wales

The Electricity (Offshore Generating Stations) (Applications for Consent) Regulations 2006

The Electricity (Offshore Generating Stations) (Applications for Consent) Regulations 2006 were laid before Parliament on 27 July 2006 and are due to come into force on 1 October 2006.

The Regulations apply to applications to the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry for consent under section 36 of the Electricity Act 1989 to construct, extend or operate an offshore generating station, defined as a generating station located either within the Renewable Energy Zone or within waters in or adjacent to England and Wales between the mean low water mark and the seaward limits of the territorial sea.

The Regulations do not extend to Scotland and therefore to not apply to those waters in respect of which the Scottish Ministers have functions.
The Regulations disapply the Electricity (Applications for Consent) Regulations 1990 insofar as they previously applied to section 36 applications relating to offshore generating stations.

Provision is made regarding the publication of notices of an application for consent, consultation with certain public bodies, service of notices where no part of the place where the development is due to take place lies within the jurisdiction of a relevant planning authority, timescales within which objections to a proposal should be notified to the Secretary of State, and publication of notices of any public inquiry to be held.

Provision is also made regarding fees payable upon applications being made for consent.

See link to OPSI website.

Scotland

There have been no items of legislation relating to the environment introduced this month, which are applicable in Scotland only.

Northern Ireland

The Water and Sewerage Services (Miscellaneous Provisions) (Northern Ireland) Order 2006

The Water and Sewerage Services (Miscellaneous Provisions) (Northern Ireland) Order 2006 was made on 19 July 2006 and will come into operation on 1 August 2006. The Order makes provision for the disclosure of certain information for the purpose of enabling or assisting arrangements to be made in connection with the development, introduction and implementation of a charges scheme in connection with water and sewerage services.

The Order also amends the Water (Northern Ireland) Order 1999 in relation to the abstraction and impounding of water. A substitute Article 20 of the Water (Northern Ireland) Order 1999 is provided, which permits the Department for Regional Development to make regulations for the purpose of controlling, restricting or prohibiting the abstraction of water from underground strata or waterways, and controlling, restricting or prohibiting the construction, alteration or operation of any impounding works.

A new Article 38A is also inserted within the Water (Northern Ireland) Order 1999, in respect of application of the Order to the Crown.

See link to OPSI website.

The Ozone Depleting Substances (Qualifications) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2006

The Ozone Depleting Substances (Qualifications) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2006 were made on 28 July 2006 and are due to come into operation on 31 August 2006. The Regulations give effect to the provisions in Articles 16(5), 17(1) and 17(2) of European Regulation (EC) No. 2037/2000 on substances that deplete the ozone layer (as amended by Regulation (EC) 2038/2000, 2039/2000, 1804/2003 and 2077/2004 and Council Decisions 2003/160/EC, 2004/232/EC and 2005/625/EC).

The Regulations make provision in respect of minimum qualifications applicable to those working on the recovery, recycling, reclamation or destruction of controlled substances and the prevention and minimising of leakages of controlled substances.

Under regulation 5, it is an offence for a person to carry out relevant work involving controlled substances or work with methyl bromide unless he is competent to do so, the terms "competent", "relevant work" and "work with methyl bromide" all being defined in the Regulations.

Details of the qualifications which a person needs in order to carry out certain types of relevant work, are contained in the Table in Schedule 1 of the Regulations. Regulation 5 also contains provisions making it an offence for an employer to employ a person to carry out relevant work or work with methyl bromide unless that person is competent to do so.

See link to OPSI website.

Wales

There have been no items of legislation relating to the environment introduced this month, which are applicable in Wales only.

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