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EPA Clarifies Use of Technical Amendments

On the 1st of June 2022, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published guidance as to what facility alterations are not likely to be accommodated by a Technical Amendment (TA) to Waste/Industrial Emission Licences.

Proposed changes not likely to be accommodated by way of a TA include the following:

• Regularisation of any on-going infringement of the conditions of an existing licence;

• Any increase in the total waste acceptance capacity of a facility or installation;

• Any acceptance of new waste types that are in contravention with the facility’s or installation’s existing waste licence;

• A change in operations that would involve the incineration of hazardous waste at a co-incineration plant or at a plant where, in accordance with its existing licence, is permitted only for the incineration of non-hazardous waste (for more information see Article 54 of the Industrial Emissions Directive & Article 4(8) of the Waste Incineration Directive);

• Acceptance of hazardous waste at facilities/installations that are not licenced to do so (e.g. licenced to accept non-hazardous waste only);

• Boundary reductions that would lead to insufficient storage or processing space for licensed waste acceptance capacity;

• Changes in activities which would require a new class of activity that is not accommodated in a facility’s or installation’s existing licence;

• Changes that result in new or increased process emissions (not including new storm water emissions points);

• An extension of the operating hours of a facility or installation which is not consistent with the existing planning permission;

• Proposals which would require the preparation of a Natura Impact Statement (NIS) for consideration by any planning or public authority;

• Proposals which would require planning permission and may be subject to Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) by the relevant planning authority or An Bord Pleanála;

• Proposals which constitute a substantial change in the case of Industrial Emission licences. Substantial change meaning a change in the nature or functioning, or an extension, of an installation or facility which may have significant negative impacts on the environment or on human health. This includes if the change in itself reaches the capacity thresholds of the relevant Industrial Emission activity (see Section 98(5) of the Environmental Protection Agency Act 1992 as amended).

Should any of the above scenarios occur, then it is understood that a licence review, or a new licence application may be required to accommodate these alterations.

August 2022