Effective Enforcement of Environmental Regulations


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  • In order to give this talk I had to turn it on its head by taking about Regulation Environment Enforcement Effectiveness Delivery
  • Strategy . Pursue a strategic, rather than piecemeal, approach to law-making for broad environmental policy sectors. Definitions . Provide clear and unambiguous definitions for key terms. Make definitions consistent between laws unless there is good reason for difference. Requirements . Ensure that the requirements of the law are clear, and appropriate to deliver the aims of the legislation. Timeframes . Ensure that timeframes for implementation are clear and practical. Check that the timeframes of different laws fit realistically. Proportionality . Ensure that the requirements of legislation are proportionate to the risks and hazards they address. Reporting . Only require reporting that will support implementation of the law or give useful feedback on its effectiveness. Harmonise reporting requirements across different laws. Revision . Make provision in the law for a simplified process (where the Treaties allow this) to quickly review and revise parts of the law if initial implementation reveals problems of practicability and enforceability.
  • Faced with so many regulations, sometimes not written very well and so many issues to be resolve on the ground where do you begin to enforce effectively I am proposing that DRINC is the answer The first shot of DRINC is:
  • The second shot of DRINC is:
  • The Third shot of DRINC is:
  • The fourth shot of DRINC is:
  • The last call for DRINC is:
  • WHO define health not just as an absence of disease or infirmity, but rather, it is a state of complete physical, mental and social wellbeing . There are many health factors that are beyond the control or influence of regulatory agencies; however, the issue of TRUST is considered central to one’s sense of wellbeing. Building of trust in communities is key to the implementation and enforcement of environmental law
  • I will finish with a quote from a book called the “The Regulatory Craft” , by Malcolm Sparrow (2000) “ Regulators, under unprecedented pressure, face a range of demands, often contradictory in nature: be less intrusive – but more effective; be kinder and gentler – but don’t let (them) get away with anything; focus your efforts – but be consistent; process things quicker – and be more careful next time; deal with important issues – but do not stray outside your statutory authority; be more responsive to the regulated community – but do not get captured by industry.” As you can see there are many challenges but we must meet them if we are to deliver effective enforcement of Environmental Legislation.
  • Effective Enforcement of Environmental Regulations

    1. 1. Effective Enforcement of Environmental Regulations Environment Ireland 2006 4 September 2006, Burlington Hotel, Dublin Mr Dara Lynott BE, MSc, PE, CEng Director Office of Environmental Enforcement Environmental Protection Agency All or part of this publication may be reproduced without further permission, provided the source is acknowledged.
    2. 2. Talk Outline <ul><li>Regulation - What has to be enforced? </li></ul><ul><li>Environment - The enforcement issues on the ground </li></ul><ul><li>Effective Enforcement - D.R.I.N.C. </li></ul><ul><li>Delivery - Delivery of enforcement </li></ul>
    3. 3. What has to be Enforced? – The Environmental Acquis <ul><li>The Environmental Acquis - “ acquis communautre´ </li></ul><ul><li>comprises approximately 300 Directives and Regulations, including Daughter Directives and amendments. </li></ul><ul><li>estimated to require an investment of about 80 to 120 billion euro for the ten accession countries alone. </li></ul>
    4. 4. What has to be Enforced? - Environmental Regulation <ul><li>Products - noise / emissions, etc </li></ul><ul><li>Activities & Production Processes - construction/industrial operations, etc </li></ul><ul><li>Environmental Quality Protection - emissions/nature protection, etc </li></ul><ul><li>Procedures & Procedural Rights - EIA/access to information, etc </li></ul>
    5. 5. Effective Enforcement Needs a Good Legal Base <ul><li>Strategy - strategic, rather than piecemeal, </li></ul><ul><li>Definitions - clear and unambiguous; consistent between laws </li></ul><ul><li>Requirements - requirements of the law are clear and achieve aims </li></ul><ul><li>Timeframes - practical fit realistically across different laws. </li></ul><ul><li>Proportionality - proportionate to the risks </li></ul><ul><li>Reporting - only essential reporting; harmonise across different laws </li></ul><ul><li>Revision - allow for quick revision if enforcement issues arise </li></ul>  IMPEL Principles for Better Legislation  
    6. 6. The Environmental Issues - Waste Rodent infestation Carcinogenic effect Litter Dioxin formation Fly tipping/backyard burning Odour nuisance Quality of life Odour Nuisance Control of odour and noise at waste facilities Rodent infestation Explosive atmospheres Contaminated drinking water and food Methane gas build up Groundwater and soil contamination Control of C&D material - 80% of illegally dump waste was C&D Explosive atmosphere Contaminated drinking water and food Methane gas build up Groundwater and soil contamination Installation of landfill gas and leachate infrastructure at older landfills Odour nuisance Contaminated drinking water Rodent infestation Contaminated soils Ground water and surface water pollution associated with spills or illegal waste facilities Handling storage and transfer of waste at licensed facilities Health Impact Environmental Impact Waste Issues
    7. 7. The Environmental Issues - Surface Water Faecal coliform pollution in drainage ditches and bathing water River, lake and bathing water pollution Storm water overflows and misconnections Faecal coliform pollution in amenity areas River and lake pollution Poor farmyard management Nitrate and faecal coliform pollution of drinking waters Surface water pollution Inappropriate land spreading Health Impact Env. Impact Surface Water Issues Faecal coliform pollution in amenity areas - gastroenteritis River, lake and bathing water pollution Poor management of wastewater treatment plants
    8. 8. The Environmental Issues - Groundwater Carcinogenic subtances in drinking water wells Historic contamination of groundwater Poor management practices at older industrial facilities Faecal coliform pollution in residential areas Groundwater pollution Poor installation and management of small communities systems Drinking water contamination Groundwater pollution Poor septic tank installation and management Carcinogenic subtances in drinking water wells Contamination of groundwater Poor containment of hazardous materials Nitrate and faecal coliform pollution of drinking waters Groundwater pollution Inappropriate land spreading Health Impact Environmental Impact Groundwater Issues
    9. 9. The Environmental Issues - Drinking water Inadequate source water protection Health Impact Environmental Impact Drinking Water Issues Gastroenteritis Faecal colifom pollution in private wells Private water schemes – not satisfactory ( 40 % contaminated with e-coli at least once in 2004) Inadequate monitoring and reporting Gastroenteritis Cryptosporidiosis notifications rising Public water supplies - satisfactory 21% of supplies that were risk assessed identified as high/very high risk
    10. 10. The Environmental Issues – Odour Nuisance Issues Causes Odour Nuisance Difficult to diagnose Mixed success in Court Significant time dealing with complaints Intensification of activities Changing nature of waste stream Incorrect or delayed installation of odour abatement infrastructure. Significant increase in complaints against waste facilities following Signicant knowledge gained EPA as mediators Significant investment or closure Decreasing complaints against industry. Significant investigation time Location of older facilities Conurbation Most complaints to the EPA are odour related
    11. 11. Enforcement by D.R.I.N.C. <ul><li>The Environmental Protection Agency implements and enforces environmental regulations by D.R.I.N.C. </li></ul><ul><li>D psir – Office of Environmental Assessment </li></ul><ul><li>R isk based approaches – OffIce of Environmnetal Enforcement </li></ul><ul><li>I ntegrated Pollution Prevention Control (IPPC) – Office of Licensing and Guidance </li></ul><ul><li>N etworks - Office of Environmental Enforcement </li></ul><ul><li>C ommunication – Office of Communications and Corporate Services </li></ul>
    12. 12. DPSIR Framework <ul><li>If you can measure or understand the linkages you can influence the driving forces </li></ul>
    13. 13. DPSIR Framework <ul><li>Social and economic D riving forces (such as economic growth) </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>exert P ressures on the environment </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>so the S tate of the environment changes </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>these have I mpacts on human health and well-being and on biodiversity. </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>which provoke a R esponse to feed back to the driving forces. </li></ul>
    14. 14. State of the Environment Report <ul><li>Flagship Report produced every 4 years by the EPA </li></ul><ul><li>Last Report published in 2004 </li></ul><ul><li>Last Report set out specific challenges: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Meeting International Commitments on Air Emissions - Greenhouse Gas, Acidifying Gases </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Eutrophication Prevention and Control </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Waste Management </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sectoral Integration -Integrating the environment into sectoral decision making </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Improving Enforcement of Environmental Legislation </li></ul></ul>
    15. 15. Risk Based Approach to Enforcement <ul><li>Risk is determined by evaluating </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Complexity of activity – some activities are inherently riskier than others. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Emissions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Environmental sensitivity - The activity location in relation to: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Human beings </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Groundwater </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Surface water </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Air quality </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Protected ecological species </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Sensitive agricultural receptors </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Operator management - Whether the activity is/was well managed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Compliance history –Whether the activity has complied with permits/legislation </li></ul></ul>
    16. 16. Risk Based Approach to Enforcement <ul><li>Risk based approach will: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Focus on environmental outcomes, not administrative checks </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Establish a risk ranking and also priorities </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Target effort at the high risk – frequency and type of enforcement is determined from the risk clasification </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be consistent - not based on inspector/regional assessment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be transparent – available to licensees </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Be interactive – provide for licensee input </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Risk based approach should: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Encourage good environmental practices into normal working methods. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Help to prevent environmental pollution before it has a chance to occur. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provide information and advice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Secure environmental improvements while ensuring value for money. </li></ul></ul>
    17. 17. Enforcement Following Risk Assessment <ul><li>Use range of compliance assessment tools </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Audit and inspection plan for site visits, inspections, audits </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Emission monitoring </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Assessment of self monitoring & programmes </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Incident & complaint response </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Mediation </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>The enforcement tools used to improve environmental performance </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Letters/ Notifications of Non-Compliance </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Enforcement Notices </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Court Orders </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Prosecution </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Licence Review / Revocation </li></ul></ul></ul>
    18. 18. Other Risk Based Approaches to Enforcement by the EPA <ul><li>Risk categorisation of historic waste disposal sites </li></ul><ul><li>Identify when potable water is at a high risk of contamination </li></ul><ul><li>Risk categorisation of historic mine sites </li></ul><ul><li>Financial provision for environmental liability </li></ul>
    19. 19. Integrated Pollution Prevention Control <ul><li>IPPC licences are the vehicle through which many of the EU Directives are implemented in Ireland </li></ul><ul><li>Cover all Environmental media “Integrated” </li></ul><ul><li>The EPA Act legally binds the Agency to ensure a high standard of environmental protection, as well as the prevention of significant environmental pollution. </li></ul>
    20. 20. EPA Toolbox for Integrated Pollution Prevention Control <ul><li>International Standards </li></ul><ul><ul><li>EU Directives & Regulations </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>WHO </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Best Available Techniques Reference Documents (BAT Reference Documents, or BREF) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Emission and Ambient Monitoring </li></ul><ul><li>Modelling </li></ul><ul><li>Advice of/input from Statutory Consultees (Health Authorities, etc) </li></ul>
    21. 21. The Maximum-At-Risk-Individual Model <ul><li>Maximum At Risk Individual (MARI) concept for health impact assessment. A MARI is a theoretical individual - a subsistence farmer, living for 30 years (usually) in, and obtaining all their food from a 100m diameter plot, upon which the maximum pollutant flux is deposited – represents the most sensitive of cases in a receiving population. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>(used mainly in relation to air pollutants) </li></ul></ul>
    22. 22. Networks <ul><li>The use of Networks </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Gather practitioners to scope the problem and look at solutions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Prepare and implement action plans </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Disseminate and communicate clearly </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Extranet (1000 signed up) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Conferences </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Working groups </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Regional concerted enforcement actions and inspection plans </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Gardai, NBCI, CAB, PSNI co-operation </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Use of private surveillance </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Use of lo-call phone lines </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Outcomes </li></ul><ul><ul><li>National Complaints System </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>National Inspector Training Programme </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Specialist Enforcement Training </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Development and distribution of enforcement protocols </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>More consistent enforcement across all local authorities </li></ul></ul>
    23. 23. Communication - Building Trust <ul><li>Who does what? </li></ul><ul><li>Many stakeholders - different views </li></ul><ul><li>Open and transparent organisation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reports, media, presentations, newsletters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Website, public files, licensing files on website </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Licences available at sites, EPA offices and on www.epa.ie </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Real time monitoring data will be available for municipal incinerators </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Meetings </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Challenge to communicate - to build trust with communities </li></ul><ul><li>Decisions not always popular </li></ul>
    24. 24. Delivery of Enforcement by Networks <ul><ul><li>12,000 Inspections carried out </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>5,000 Copies of the (EEN) newsletter distributed  </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>1,600 Statutory Notices issued </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>998 Members registered in the Enforcement Network </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>420 Copies of the Manual of Enforcement Guidance distributed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>377 Check points carried out </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>373 Active members of the secure web-based Extranet </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>300 Prosecutions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>65 Enforcement Network events </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>60 LA Officers trained in advanced enforcement skills </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>50 Public sector bodies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>13 Guidance documents developed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>3 National seminars </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>3 National conferences </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>1 Action plan to deal with illegal waste activities </li></ul></ul>
    25. 25. Delivery of Enforcement by EPA <ul><li>Regionalised enforcement </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Greater local knowledge – community voice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lower travel distances </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Happier staff </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Team based enforcement </li></ul><ul><ul><li>No single expert </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Regional and sectoral teams </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Greater development of technical guidance </li></ul><ul><ul><li>More efficient use of inspector time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Greater consistency and transparancy </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Continued investment in training </li></ul><ul><ul><li>€ 485k in 2005 or approx 4% of payroll </li></ul></ul>
    26. 26. Delivery of Enforcement by EPA in 2004-2005 <ul><ul><li>37 prosectutions </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>€ 320,000 in fines and costs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>€ 33 million + in improvements in site infrastructure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>7 cases progressing to the higher Courts on indictment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>€ 120k highest fine imposed by the Court (framework for calculating fines also detailed by the Court) </li></ul></ul>
    27. 27. Future of Enforcement <ul><li>Put resources where risks are highest </li></ul><ul><li>Be cost effective and outcome based </li></ul><ul><li>Challenge the quality and relevance of the data we collect </li></ul><ul><li>Develop electronic capture of data to enable trend analysis and access by regulators and the public </li></ul><ul><li>Develop the right indicators that are policy relevant and usable at a regional level </li></ul><ul><li>Engage with communities in communication of risk </li></ul>
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