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Revised IPPC Directive Now in Force

by 5m Editor
19 January 2011, at 9:41am

UK - After nearly three years of discussion and debate, the revised IPPC Directive (now known as the Industrial Emissions Directive) entered into force on 6 January 2011. The UK has two years to transpose it into national legislation.

Around 52,000 installations across the EU are covered by the Directive in range of sectors including metal production, chemical manufacture, waste incineration, fuel combustion in large installations as well as poultry and pig farming.

Successful lobbying by the NFU during negotiations halted the European Commission's original proposals (published in late 2007) to expand the scope of the Directive to include more and smaller pig and poultry farms and plans to bring in some protected edible horticulture businesses. Proposals to extend IPPC-type controls to off-site manure spreading were also halted.

However, at the close of negotiations a last minute compromise deal meant that the Commission has been tasked with undertaking a number of additional reviews including whether poultry thresholds should be differentiated and whether emissions from cattle and manure spreading need to be controlled. The review of poultry thresholds is expected to start early next year and to report by the end of 2011.

Amongst other things, the revised Directive provides for a more harmonised implementation of best practice technologies, so-called best available techniques (BAT), across the EU.

Defra is expected to consult on any legislative changes needed to UK law in early 2012. In the meantime, guidance for member states on the implementation of the revised Directive is expected to be published shortly by the Commission.

The NFU's Chief Environment Adviser, Diane Mitchell, said: "A key priority for the NFU will be to keep abreast of the progress of the various reviews that are about to be undertaken by the Commission on whether the poultry thresholds need to be revised, and whether emissions from cattle and manure spreading need to be controlled. We remain convinced that the benefits of making any additional changes to the Directive will not outweigh the costs to industry, government and regulators.

"We are also heavily involved in the discussions taking place to review best available techniques (BAT) at an EU level for pig and poultry units. The revised Directive places greater emphasis on the importance of EU best practice and we need to be represented in discussions.

"Along with the NFU's office in Brussels, we will also be monitoring for any implementation guidance issued by the Commission. Transposition of the revised Directive will be a key priority for member states over the next couple of years so any guidance issued by the Commission on implementation and interpretation will be particularly important."