Waste Disposal: Licensing

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 18th April 2019.

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Photo of John Grogan John Grogan Labour, Keighley

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what plans he has to strengthen the powers the environment agency has to determine whether a person or a company is fit and proper to be granted a licence regarding the disposal or incineration of waste.

Photo of Therese Coffey Therese Coffey The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Last year the Government committed to implementing measures to raise the standard of operator competence at permitted waste sites by strengthening the Environment Agency’s assessment and enforcement powers.

www.gov.uk/government/consultations/reducing-crime-at-sites-handling-waste-and-introducing-fixed-penalties-for-waste-duty-of-care/outcome/government-response

We are now delivering on these published commitments. In January we passed legislation requiring all waste facilities to have a written management plan to minimise the risks of pollution to the environment.

www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2018/1227/part/3/made

In March we widened the scope of past offences the Environment Agency can consider when assessing competence for applications for waste facility permits:

www.gov.uk/government/publications/relevant-conviction-guidance-for-permit-applications-for-waste-activities-and-installations-only/relevant-convictions-for-waste-environmental-permits

In the coming months we will update Core Guidance to strengthen the Environment Agency’s enforcement capabilities when considering operators’ past performance. Further measures to tackle crime and low levels of performance in the waste industry are set out in our Resources and Waste Strategy.

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