Legislation Compliance

In the UK the environment is generally defined to mean air, water and land. Environmental legislation, and therefore legislation compliance, is generally aimed at protecting one or more of these elememts. The main regulatory bodies responsible for the protection of the environment are:

  • The Environment Agency (which covers England and Wales)
  • The Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA)
  • The Department of the Environment in Northern Ireland
  • Local Authorities

Key air pollution legislation affecting business:

  • The Environmental Protection Act 1990 – amended by the Pollution Prevention and Control Act 1999
  • The Clean Air Act 1993
  • Environment Act 1995 – provides for the National Air Quality framework
  • Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2007
  • Finance Act 2000 – creates the Climate Change Levy which seeks to minimise greenhouse gases
  • Waste and Emissions Trading Act 2003 – provides for statutory emissions trading
  • The Air Quality Standards Regulations 2007
  • The CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme Order 2010

Key water pollution legislation affecting business:

  • Water Resources Act 1991
  • Water Industry Act 1991
  • Control of Pollution (Oil Storage)(England) Regulations 2001

Key land pollution legislation affecting business:

  • Environmental Protection Act 1990, Part II
  • Waste (England and Wales) Regulations 2011
  • Hazardous Waste (England and Wales) Regulations 2005
  • List of Wastes (England) Regulations 2005
  • Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2007
  • Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations 2005
  • Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations 2006

The above lists are not comprehensive but designed to give a flavour of some of the main environmental legislation applicable to businesses.

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