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An increasing number of activities now fall under the environmental permitting regulations (EPR) as waste management operations. While most of these are the principal activity of businesses such as transfer or treatment sites, many businesses outside of the waste sector also undertake processes that are a scheduled activity.
Scheduled activities are those meeting the descriptions and thresholds set out in Annex 1 to the Industrial Emissions Directive (IED)*. Common waste sector examples include effluent treatment processes, solvent recycling, wastewater treatment and use of excavated soil ("waste") in construction or earthworks, and may involve a fixed site or mobile plant. The original Environmental Permitting Regulations (2008) also replaced the Waste Management Licensing (WML) regulations (1994).
The environmental permitting regime obliges operators to consider, document and manage risks to the environment from actual or potential ‘discharges’ to air, water or land. This usually requires a range of application documents such as site specific environmental risk assessments, written management procedures, and evidence of operator training and competence.
Adeptus provides waste permitting consultancy as required to achieve duly made applications, variations, transfers and surrenders for waste operators in all sectors. We have in house capability for the provision of all technical reports, from initial location and site screening checks, to site conditions reports, fire prevention plans and detailed best available technique (BAT) assessment.
The main categories for scheduled waste management activities are listed below.
Depending on its scale and nature an activity or waste installation may fall under Part A1, A2, or Part B of the regulations. Part A1 waste permits are regulated in England by the Environment Agency, in Wales Natural Resources Wales (NRW), and in Scotland by the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA); Part A2 and Part B permits are issued by the local authority whose are in which the activity is situated.
Part A1 (Environment Agency) permits are generally required for larger or higher risk activities such as hazardous waste treatment, and involve a range of requirements for risk assessments and operator competence. In line with their more limited scope, the application process for Part A2 and Part B permits is generally less demanding.
A number of exemptions from the requirement for a permit are also applicable to operations using, treating, storing or disposing of waste, subject certain thresholds and conditions.
Standard rules permits offer a simplified application and determination process for waste operations subject to upper limits on the quantity of waste accepted, stored or processed, and proximity to environmental receptors such as European Sites. Standard rules (SR) permits are available for activities in the below categories.
Most of the standard rules permits for waste are limited to 75,000 tonnes of waste per year, and the permitted site usually cannot be located within 200 metres of a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), Special Area of Conservation (SAC), Special Protection Area (SPA) Ramsar site, or within 50m of a potable groundwater abstraction borehole or spring. Operations in proximity to such features will require a bespoke environmental permit.
Scheduled waste activities not eligible for an exemption or operating within the standard rules, will be required to apply for a bespoke installation permit. The scale and nature of such operations and their potential impacts dictates that an enhanced level of pre-application assessment is required on the part of the operator (or their consultant), and by the regulator in determining applications and drafting permit conditions.
Depending on factors such as the nature of waste streams, processes, site location, effluent discharges, etc., complex assessment such as dispersion modelling may be required. A number of waste activities, such as landfilling, always require a bespoke environmental permit. Additionally, permanently depositing waste on land (waste recovery) require the submission of a waste recovery plan.
We also undertake Definition of Waste and End of Waste Assessments. Waste classification is carried out in compliance with government guidance WM3.
Waste Planning, including operations under the Waste Management Licensing Regulations 1994 and the Pollution Prevention and Control Regulations 2000, in so far as they apply to waste management, is now dealt with in PPG10 Planning and Waste Management (September 1999), which is currently under review
Most of these were originally listed in IPPC Directive**, which was repealed in January 2014. In England, the IED requirements are also applied to a small number of WASTE(?) activities that were formerly listed as IPC "prescribed processes” under Part I of the Environmental Protection Act 1990 (EPA 1990). The Environmental Permitting Regulations replaced the Waste Management Licensing (WML).
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