Category Archives: Guidances

Is your construction business ready to meet SEPA’s new licensing requirements?

SEPA’s new licensing requirements come into effect this weekend, Saturday 1st September, and they will affect all new large construction projects across Scotland.  

What is Changing?

The changes to the regulations have been introduced to reduce the potential risks of pollution to the water environment from construction sites. Discharges of surface water run-off from construction sites to the water environment are regulated, and the changes are designed to ensure treatment systems are in place prior to and during the construction phase. These changes apply to a wide range of construction types, including residential and industrial building, wind farms, forestry, transport, pipe laying, overhead pylons and hydro power schemes. The changes are designed to ensure treatment systems for surface water runoff are in place prior to and during the construction phase.

Work at new construction sites, including land preparation, must not commence, on or after, 1st September 2018 at sites where a licence is required without:

  • Having first obtained a licence from SEPA; and
  • Adhering to a pollution prevention plan for the site that SEPA has reviewed.

As of September 1st SEPA are expecting complete compliance across the industry. David Harley, Head of Water and Planning at SEPA, has stated: 

“We are clear that compliance is non-negotiable”

These licences must be approved prior to commencement of work and the plan must be complied with onsite during the entire construction phase.

Who Will be Affected?

From 1 September 2018 all new large construction projects must have a licence and Pollution Prevention Plan. These should be secured before any work on site commences.

A licence will be required for sites that:

  • Exceed 4 hectares in area;
  • Contain a road or track length in excess of 5km; or
  • Include any area of more than 1 hectare or any length of more than 500 metres on ground with a slope in excess of 25 degrees.

Your Next Steps.

SEPA expect the construction industry to be aware of new licensing requirements and adhere to these by September 1st. SEPA have requested applicants allow up to four months for them to issue an authorisation and consider your pollution prevention plan.  If you have new developments planned for after September 1st, and were unaware of these changes or would like some advice on what is required from your business Albion will be able to assist. Albion can help with the development of a pollution prevention plan and application submissions or provide feedback and assistance with existing plans. If you have any questions regarding these changes and potential impacts to your business, give Albion call on 01292 610 428 or mailto: and one of our consultants will be able to assist you.






Guidance on Fire Safety at Non Hazardous Waste Transfer Stations.

In recent years, some serious fires have taken place at waste transfer stations (WTS). Fires at WTS have the potential to be very serious events, posing risk to life and presenting hazards to the local community and the environment. They can also be very costly. The growing incidence of fires has prompted the development of Guidance on Fire Safety at Non Hazardous Waste Transfer Stations.

To learn more on this topic, please follow the link: Fire Safety At Non-Hazardous Waste Transfer Stations Guidance Note.

Albion Environmental Ltd specialise in providing high quality Health and Safety Consultancy and Training for the Waste Management sector. Do not hesitate to contact us to pose us your Health and Safety questions, we will be happy to provide you support to fit your needs and requirements, and ensure compliance with relevant Health and Safety legislation.

Source: Environmental Protection Agency

Agri-renewables Strategy for Scotland – Scottish Government

This is a sectoral Routemap which sits alongside the 2020 Routemap for Renewable Energy in Scotland.

The Strategy shows how agri-renewables can contribute to the aim of building a cleaner, greener Scotland and where we see the future for agri-renewables. It demonstrates how the Scottish Government, working in collaboration with industry and other stakeholders, will continue to support development to achieve a sustainable and viable market for agri-renewables to help us deliver the transition to a low carbon economy.

Please follow the link to know more about the Agri-renewables Strategy for Scotland:

Source: Scottish Government

New CIWM guidance provides simple and clear advice on healthcare waste audits

The Environmental Permitting (England and Wales) Regulations require that all wastes generated at a property that undertakes healthcare practices must be subject to a
pre-acceptance audit prior to collection via a contractor.

Failing to comply can result in the contractor being unable to collect your wastes. Furthermore, undertaking the correct pre-acceptance audit procedure will enable you to ensure your wastes are transported in accordance with legislation and that the suitable documentation and audit trail for managed wastes is available.

New guidance on waste auditing for large healthcare producers was published last 17th of January by the Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM). Prepared by the Institution’s Healthcare Waste Special Interest Group, the document is designed to provide simple and concise guidance on pre-acceptance waste audits, as required by the Environmental Permitting (England & Wales) Regulations.

For more information, please download the guidance in the link: Advice on Healthcare Waste Audits

Source: CIWM

Consignee returns: relaxation of reporting requirements for specified hazardous wastes (EA)

When hazardous waste is collected from one place and delivered to another, a consignment note is used to track the movement. Each individual consignment note has an associated fee payable to the Environment Agency. A summary of the details in the consignment notes received must be reported quarterly to us by the site receiving the waste (known as the consignee).

This regulatory position statement identifies the circumstances where the consignee doesn’t have to enter each individual consignment for movements of specified hazardous wastes, so allowing a reduction in charges. All other requirements of the Hazardous Waste Regulations still apply, including the requirement to complete consignment notes.

To know more about this, please follow the link: Regulatory Position Statement 135. 

Source: EA

Pollution Prevention and Control Regulations: Site Report Guidance and Template for Applicants and Operators

This document has been updated for the Industrial Emissions Directive – changes introduced by The Pollution Prevention and Control (Industrial Emissions) Regulations (NI) 2013.

A Site Report describes and records the condition of the land and groundwater at a site. It will enable baseline conditions of the land and groundwater to be established and subsequently enable you to demonstrate that you have protected the land and groundwater and it is in a satisfactory state when you come to surrender your permit. You can demonstrate this by:

• Producing the application part of the Site Report when you first apply for a permit.

• Updating the Site Report during the lifetime of your permit.

• Completing the surrender parts and submitting the full completed Site Report when you apply to surrender your permit.

In the Site Report, you will describe what condition the land and groundwater are in at the time of surrender. If the land and groundwater are not in a satisfactory state, the application to surrender the permit will not be accepted.

For more information about the stages in the site report process and to get site report templates, please follow the link: Site Report Guidance and Template for Applicants and Operators.

Source: DOENI

Healthcare Waste Pre-Acceptance Waste Audits Guidance

CIWM released on 17th of January its latest guidance document on Pre-Acceptance Waste Audits for large healthcare waste producers in England.

Pre-acceptance waste audits are required to ensure that healthcare wastes are sent for the correct treatment and disposal, and robust auditing and reporting practices are essential to ensure compliance. Good auditing, however, also brings other benefits, including potentially significant cost savings and carbon footprint reductions that can be realised by efficient and appropriate segregation of higher and lower risk healthcare waste streams. The Royal College of Nursing has estimated that there is the potential for annual savings of approximately £5.5 million for the NHS if just 20% of incorrectly classified infectious waste were to be reclassified as offensive waste with lower associated waste management costs.

Please follow the link to download the full guidance: CIWM Healthcare Waste Pre-Acceptance Waste Audits Guidance.

The Revised Northern Ireland Waste Management Strategy entitled ‘Delivering Resource Efficiency’

This strategy sets the policy framework for the management of waste in Northern Ireland and it builds on and retains the core principles of the 2006 Strategy. The new Strategy moves the emphasis of waste management in NI from resource management, with landfill diversion as the key driver, to resource efficiency, that is using resources in the most effective way while minimising the impact of their use on the environment.

Please follow the links for more information:

Waste Management Strategy.

Delivering Resource Efficiency Report.

Source: Department of the Environment Northern Ireland

Environment Agency Guidance on reducing fire risk at waste sites

The Environment Agency have now developed a new Technical Guidance Note (TGN): Reducing Fire Risk at Sites Storing Combustible Materials. This supports their work to review operators’ site accident plans and their officers will be using this when inspecting waste sites.

This guidance applies to your site if it doesn’t have:

  • a relevant sector fire code of practice recognised by us or another appropriate professional body
  • an accident plan, which has been assessed and agreed with the local Fire and Rescue Service

Please follow the link to download Environment Agency’s guidance: Technical Guidance Note.

CIWM has welcomed the Technical Guidance Note issued by the Environment Agency on reducing fire risk at waste sites. Please follow the link to read the interview to Steve Lee, CIWM chief executive, on this topic: Interview.

Source: CIWM and EA