The Environment Bill has come out of hibernation and is scheduled to have its House of Commons Committee Stage today, 3rd November.
This very wide reaching and important Bill is a re-introduction (with some changes) of the Environment Bill introduced by the previous administration, but not enacted.
I Blog posted in 2019 about it. To reprise – the Environment Bill comprises two thematic halves. The first provides a legal framework for environmental governance, including setting up the Office for Environmental Protection – the OEP (the new additional regulator in England, and Northern Ireland). The second makes provision for specific improvement of the environment, including measures on waste and resource efficiency, air quality and environmental recall, water, nature and biodiversity, and conservation covenants.
The Bill also makes further Brexit changes to REACH Legislation.
The Bill is a very lengthy document – an unofficial version of tracked changes (from the earlier Bill) is here.
Re the OEP – the government has tabled its own amendment to the bill to enable it to guide the OEP how to use its enforcement powers. Note, with the current Bill drafting, the government will itself choose the people in charge of the OEP – the chair and the board.
Depending on the rate of progress, I will commence reprising the earlier Blog posts I wrote, and adding new ones.