Environmental permits for energy from waste plants

The following Energy practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Environmental permits for energy from waste plants
  • What is Energy from Waste (EfW)?
  • What is environmental permitting?
  • When is a permit required?
  • Offence
  • Exemptions
  • Registration
  • Operator and regulator
  • Operator
  • Regulator
  • More...

Environmental permits for energy from waste plants

What is Energy from Waste (EfW)?

Energy from waste (EfW) involves taking waste and turning it into a useable form of energy from a sustainable energy source. This includes electricity, heat, gas and transport fuels (eg diesel). This can be implemented in a range of methods of which incineration is the most well-known. Using waste as fuel can have important environmental benefits. It can provide a safe and cost-effective way of disposing of waste and help to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. For more information on EfW, see Practice Notes: Biomass and Waste to Energy Projects, Waste to energy—technologies, Regulation of energy from waste and Energy from waste—consents.

What is environmental permitting?

Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations 2016 (the Regulations), SI 2016/1154 require operators to obtain permits for some facilities and to register others as exempt. The Regulations, SI 2016/1154, consolidated and replaced the Environmental Protection (England and Wales) Regulations 2010, SI 2010/675. They provide for ongoing supervision by regulators. The aim of the permitting regime is to:

  1. protect the environment so that statutory and government policy environmental targets and outcomes are achieved

  2. ensure that the permitting procedure is clear and not unnecessarily burdensome for the regulator and the operators

  3. encourage regulators to promote best practice in the operation of facilities

  4. implement various European legislation into domestic law

The regime applies to

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