Dates for the Diary
30th June 2021
All COVID-19 Regulatory Position Statements (RPS) are due to be withdrawn on the 30th June 2021. This includes the following:
- Monitoring emissions from some environmental permitting activities: RPS C20
- Reporting for installations, radioactive substances and waste permits: RPS C21
- Accumulating radioactive waste that you cannot transfer because of COVID-19: RPS C13
- COVID-19 and exceeding permit limits for medical use of radioactive substances: RPS C15
- Cleansing and PPE waste at a healthcare waste management facility: RPS C1
- PPE waste from home healthcare workers treating patients with COVID-19: RPS C5
- Social distancing when signing and handing over waste transfer and consignment notes in person: RPS C8
- Incinerating specified healthcare wastes at a municipal waste incinerator: RPS C23
- Managing lateral flow device (LFD) testing waste: RPS C25
The EA is reviewing the ongoing need for each COVID-19 RPS shortly before its expiry date. If a COVID-19 RPS expires, they will remove it from the listing. If the EA decide to extend it, then they will amend the expiry date. It is your responsibility to check individual RPSs to determine when they expire.
Any conditions that are no longer applicable will revert back to the standard enforcement rulings and as such if you continue to operate to a revoked RPS you could be liable for enforcement action from the Environment Agency.
Articles of Interest
Road Stops Halt Illegal Waste Carriers
Environment Agency Officers have been working with partners, including local police forces and Councils such as Epsom and Ewell Borough Council and the London Borough of Bexley. They were checking vehicles carrying waste or vehicles that routinely carry waste as part of their business, to make sure their paperwork was in order.
The stops included inspecting vehicles to check they had a valid waste carrier’s licence. They also checked that they had a required waste transfer note describing what waste they were carrying, where they picked the waste up from and where they were taking it to.
Of the vehicles stopped a number of issues with the drivers’ ‘duty of care’ paperwork were found, which will be followed up. The Environment Agency is considering appropriate enforcement action for the businesses or individuals that weren’t compliant with the regulations.
Joint investigations will continue with the Environment Agency and if convicted, those responsible could face extensive fines and even prison sentences.
Source : gov.uk, 27th May 2021
Fines and Prosecutions
Norfolk man guilty of illegal waste operation
On 12 May 2021 A Dereham garage proprietor admits to storing waste illegally, despite repeated warnings from the Environment Agency. The waste included end of life motor vehicles and car parts.
Deferring sentence until November 2021, Magistrates warned Barnes that failure to clear the site within the next five months, could mean a prison sentence.
Environment Agency Officers first visited the site in November 2019. They issued advice on the safe and legal storage of waste and gave a timescale to clear the site.
Despite this advice, visiting the site on no less than ten occasions and issuing a statutory notice to clear the waste, scrap vehicles and parts remained dangerously and illegally stockpiled on the site.
Many of the vehicles and engines at the site contained fuel, brake and clutch fluid, batteries and tyres with a significant risk of fire and explosion. Site inspections found oils and fuel on the open ground with the risk of contamination to ground and surface water.
Source: gov.uk, 14th May 2021
Note: When storing any waste you must ensure that the waste is safe and secure so as not to pose a risk to the environment or human health. This may include measures such as correct segregation, proper storage containers and the waste being stored on an impermeable surface with adequate control measures installed on any drainage. It is also an offence to stockpile waste without the correct Environmental Permit or Exemption in place; each will have its own set of stipulations that must be adhered to.
Online learning and events
Carbon offsetting webinar – EA Session
11th June 2021 14:00 – 15:30
The Environment Agency has an ambitious target to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2030, this will involve reducing our carbon emissions by 45% and offsetting the remaining residual emissions.
As offsetting is new to the EA, they have undertaken a research project to help compile an evidence base to shape the development of their corporate carbon offsetting strategy . This literature review has looked in detail at the evidence behind 17 different carbon offset approaches.
edie’s Clean Energy & Transport Forum
15th July 2021 08:45 – 15:00
The need to decarbonise our energy and transport systems has never been greater. As businesses look to drive a green recovery from the coronavirus crisis and seize the opportunity presented by the UN’s COP26 climate summit later this year, the time to lead the world into a cleaner, greener future is NOW.
The Clean Energy & Transport Forum is about achieving that future, today. Held as part of edie’s Countdown to COP26 festival of digital content and events, this virtual gathering connects energy and sustainability leaders from all major industries with policymakers, industry bodies, NGOs and net-zero carbon experts, to discuss what it will take to fully decarbonise our energy and transport systems.