The European Commission has announced today (5 April 2022) major changes (proposed) to the EU Industrial Emissions Directive (the IED).
Pollution prevention and control will continue to be based on the ‘Best Available Techniques’ (BAT) IED permitting process, but the framework will be enhanced by measures to boost effectiveness:
• Member State permitting authorities will be required to use tighter pollutant emission limit values when revising permits or setting new permit conditions. Currently, about 80% of permits stick to the lowest legally allowed values.
• Extending the IED’s coverage to additional livestock farming and industrial activities: new sectors with significant potential for high resource use or pollution will need to curb environmental damage at source by applying Best Available Techniques.
• Increased focus on energy, water and material resource efficiency and reuse, as well as promoting the use of safer and less toxic, or non-toxic chemicals in industrial processes.
The new sectors proposed for IED coverage include especially:
– Extractive industry installations (mines), covering metals, rare earth metals and industrial minerals. Energy minerals, such as coal, and aggregate quarries are excluded.
– ‘Giga-factories’ for electro-mobility batteries: a growth sector, relevant for the industrial transformation, and complementing the Batteries Regulation, for larger-scale plants.
The new rules will preserve the effective mechanism used to date to decide what Best Available Techniques are for the various industrial sectors, known as the Sevilla process. The Sevilla process is a participatory, transparent, science-based information exchange involving all industry, national and European Commission experts, and civil society to set mandatory emission limits of pollutants emitted by large agro-industrial installations. Environmental norms defined through the Sevilla process are published for each industrial sector in the Best Available Techniques Reference Documents – BREFs.
BREFs then become BATC documents, when agreed and published.
Details are here.