In addition to the significant saving, cutting red tape could also reduce the time spent by businesses by 80%.

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) have called on UK businesses and the public to provide thoughts on how environmental rules and regulations can be made simpler and clearer.

Paterson said: “This is not about reducing the quality of environmental regulations. The same protection levels will stay. We want to make it easier for businesses to find and follow the law with a single version of straightforward guidance for each topic.

“Right now businesses are wading through too much complex information. We should also be smart about the information we ask from businesses and how we collect it”.

Paterson added that taking up too much of businesses’ time can be an “unseen barrier” to growth.

“With clearer, simpler guidance we can save a great deal of time and money for businesses to put to better use. As we implement these reforms we will be asking [business] to tell us how we can make it easier for businesses to do their part in improving the environment,” he said.

Environment, Energy and Water Chairman of the Federation of Small Businesses, Allen Creedy said: “Small businesses want to play their part in the move to a greener economy but they are often disproportionately affected by complicated environmental regulation. That is why the Federation of Small Businesses supports Defra’s Smarter Regulation review”.

Defra’s call is part of the departments Red Tape Challenge, which looks to improve 132 regulations.

Leigh Stringer

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