In November and December 2017 the Environment Agency (“EA”) updated or renewed a number of regulatory position statements (“RPS”) in England relating to various activities which at least theoretically would require an environmental permit. They related to activities or states of affairs which tend to produce little environment risk if proper care is taken. The EA is comfortable in reducing the regulatory burden in these circumstances.

They are useful documents in that compliance will mean that no regulatory action will be taken. The RPSs reduce uncertainty, costs and regulatory burdens.

Below are various RPSs that were updated/renewed in November and December 2017 by the EA.

Dewatering street sweepings: RPS 65

Burning waste on campfires and bonfires: RPS 50

Disposing of trees and plants infected with disease: RPS 71

Use of clay in slurry lagoons or irrigation reservoirs: RPS 91

Small-scale heat treatment of waste plastics for reuse: RPS 112

LPG flaring at end-of-life vehicle sites: RPS 202

Temporary storage of ELVs at a motor manufacturer’s dealership: RPS 205

Classifying waste wood from mixed waste wood sources: RPS 207

Regulation of materials under consideration for a Quality Protocol

Dewatering building sites and other excavations: environmental permits

Low risk waste: activities where no permit is required

Unfortunately RPSs are often overlooked. They are useful tools for both the regulator and the regulated. For the regulator they free up resources to concentrate on activities which create greater risk. Of course for the regulated party they are welcomed as they provide certainty and ease the costs and the administration burden of regulation.