Developing an Enforcement Policy for unauthorised waste activities

Date released: Jul 16 2009

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today published a Code of Practice for the Development of an Enforcement Policy for Unauthorised Waste Activities.

“The Code of Practice provides a framework for local authorities to respond to unauthorised waste activities.  It will compliment waste management controls already in place to protect the environment,” said Dara Lynott, Director of the EPA’s Office of Environmental Enforcement.

The Code of Practice is aimed at environmental regulators.  It sets out the requirements for an effective enforcement system to tackle unauthorised waste activities.  These include:

  • Detection of offences
  • Cessation of illegal activities
  • Clean-up / Remediation
  • Regularisation
  • Imposition of deterrent Penalties & Sanctions.

The Code of Practice has been prepared by the EPA at the request of the Minister for Environment Heritage, Environment and Local Government, following his policy direction (WPRR 04/08) of the 25th July 2008. The Code represents a significant part of Ireland’s response to a European Court of Justice judgement against Ireland (case C-494/01), further strengthening the Irish enforcement system. As required by the Ministerial direction, all 34 local authorities prepared enforcement policies for 2009 by the 31st December 2008. Local authorities will now upgrade their policies in light of the Code of Practice in time for their 2010 enforcement plans.

Jim Moriarty, Senior Inspector with the EPA’s Office of Environmental Enforcement, said, “Now that this Code of Practice is in place, the EPA expects that local authority enforcement systems will robustly deliver effective, proportionate and dissuasive sanctions against illegal operators. The EPA will monitor on-the-ground delivery of actions by the local authorities to identify and punish illegal waste operators.”

Download the Code of Practice or obtain a copy from EPA Publications, McCumiskey House, Richview, Dublin 14 on 01-2680100.