New industrial installations, including waste incinerators, will now fall under the Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) which has been transposed into UK law.
From today, new installations in England and Wales fall under the directive which amends the Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2010, to bring rules in line with European legislation.
Defra and the Welsh Assembly laid the legislation before Parliament and the National Assembly for Wales last month, following a consultation which ran from March to June last year.
The IED brings together regulations from seven separate directives into one piece of legislation. The regulations cover waste incineration, solvent emissions, pollution prevention and control and dealing with Titanium dioxide.
The directive covers local authority roles as regulators for all waste incineration and co-incineration activities which are below certain capacity thresholds, and the use of Best Available Techniques for incinerators which do not come under the Integrated Pollution Prevention and Control directive.
From January next year, the directive will cover installations existing before January 6 this year, except for large combustion plants.
By July 6 2015, the regulations will be implemented in respect of industrial activities not subject to the current integrated pollution prevention and control Directive.
Implementation will start from 1 January 2016 in respect of large combustion plants already in existence before 6 January 2013.
Defra also said that its consultation responses suggested “several misunderstandings and uncertainties” about the coverage of waste management activities by the Directive, and along with the Welsh Government said it would discuss with the Environment Agency the possibility of further guidance to clarify this.
The IED transforming into UK law is the culmination of the process which started in 2005 when the European Commission launched a review of European legislation on industrial emissions in order to ensure clearer environmental benefits, remove ambiguities, promote cost-effectiveness and to encourage technological innovation.