Edie Environmental Legislation Summary May 2008

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 changes this month are regulations requiring energy performance certificates for buildings in Northern Ireland and amendments to agricultural regs governing nitrate pollution.


Energy Performance of Buildings

The Energy Performance of Buildings (Certificates and Inspections) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2008 come into operation on June 30, 2008.

These new regulations transpose certain provisions of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive by setting out requirements for the production of energy performance certificates, together with recommendation reports for the improvement of the energy performance of the building, upon the construction, sale or rent of buildings and provide for the display of display energy certificates in large public buildings and the regular inspection of air conditioning systems.

A proposed commencement timetable for implementation is set out in a schedule to the regulations.

The text of these regulations is available via the link

Waste Management

Occasionally a waste management licence holder, in order to comply with the terms of his licence, is required to carry out works, that he is not entitled to carry out, in situations where consent is required to grant him certain rights in relation to land.

On April 3 the waste management sector in Northern Ireland saw the introduction of new legislative provisions under the Waste and Contaminated Land (NI) Order 1997 which made provision for consulting with persons affected, by virtue of them having an interest in land, prior to the grant, variation, suspension or revocation of a waste management licence.

Provision was also made for compensating those required to grant such rights over land to licence holders.

The Waste Management Licences (Consultation and Compensation) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2008 come into operation on May 19 making provision for such consultation and compensation.

Under the new regulations the period for making representations, in response to consultation with those whose rights are effected by the imposition of a permit condition, is three months from the date on which the consultation was served. Where the consultation relates to the proposed modification of a waste management license the period is six weeks.

With respect to compensation the regulations set out a description of the type of loss or damage covered, the basis on which compensation is assessed, the time at which entitlement arises and the procedure for making an application for compensation.

The text of these regulations may be accessed via the link


New regulations which amend the Nitrates Action Programme Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2006 come into operation on June 9, 2008 so as to implement a recent European Commission decision granting a derogation to certain provisions within the Council Directive concerning the protection of waters against pollution caused by nitrates from agricultural sources.

The Nitrates Action Programme (Amendment) Regulations) (Northern Ireland) 2008 set out the terms and conditions of the derogation, as it applies to derogated holdings. The regulations also provide for a right of appeal against the refusal of a derogation application.

Furthermore, under these new regulations the Department is obliged to submit an annual report of the monitoring results to the European Commission.

The text of these regulations is available via the link.

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